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U2 frontman Bono apologizes for foisting 'Songs of Innocence' on unsuspecting iTunes users

During a Facebook interview posted to the Web on Tuesday, U2's Bono apologized for Apple's handling of the "Songs of Innocence" LP giveaway, which caused automatic downloads for many users after the company linked the album to all iTunes accounts.

Meant as a gift to iTunes customers, Apple negotiated first rights to U2's latest album and meted the LP out for free in September.

The company spent a reported $100 million on a worldwide ad campaign touting the exclusive download, but drew criticism for attaching the album to iTunes accounts, which in turn caused unexpected downloads for those using the iOS or Mac automatic music download feature. What's more, customers were unable to delete or unlink "Songs of Innocence" from their online profiles.

"Oops, I'm sorry about that," Bono said in answer to a Facebook fan question. "We had this beautiful idea, we got a carried away with ourselves, artists are prone to that kind of thing. Drop of megalomania, touch of generosity, dash of self-promotion and deep fear that these songs that we poured our life into over the last few years mightn't be here. There's a lot of noise out there, I guess we got a little noisy ourselves to get through it."

Shortly after the debacle, Apple released a Web tool to help users remove the album from their account history.

Despite its troubles, U2's latest album is seen as a success after clocking 26 million downloads after one month of availability. In addition to full album downloads, Apple SVP of Internet Software and Service Eddy Cue said some 81 million people "experienced" songs from the LP through iTunes or streaming on iTunes Radio and Beats Music.