No cut ‘n’ past in Illustrator

I’ve had this error pop-up regularly for ages when I am using Adobe Illustrator and it drives me mad:
quicktime and a decompressor are needed to view this image
A completely unintelligible error message. What the hell does this mean exactly? I have Quicktime and it’s only a jpg so I have all the necessary resources to allow for what is in every other application on the Mac a basic mode of interaction – cut ‘n’ paste.
So far the only answer I have found is that simply the only way to import a jpg into Illustrator (and InDesign) is to use the ‘Place’ command. That seems unintuitive but if that’s the case than why not say so in the error message!
You can cut ‘n’ paste easily between Adobe applications just not from the Finder into Illustrator and InDesign.