When I started using Amarok back with Dapper Drake I could use the play/pause/next/previous buttons on the front of my laptop to control playback.
When I upgraded to Feisty Fawn this was broken and has been since (the problem lies with Amarok who are reluctant to fix a Gnome specific issue).
I created a script some time ago that fixes this issue. Using this script Amarok can now again use the multimedia shortcut buttons as defined in the Gnome "System/Prefrences/Keyboard Shortcuts" menu.
I also now have a script for the Kaffeine movie player.
This will work for multimedia keys on laptops and multimedia keyboards alike under Feisty, Gusty and Hardy.
The two scripts are available from my website and the Amarok script can be installed directly from Amarok's inbuilt script manager. Its called "Gnome Media Keys".
Hope you find this useful and let me know if there are any other players with similar issues and I'll have a go at fixing them too.