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Summary:

You could shut down all the P2P BitTorrent trackers in the world but web pirates would still find other ways to share files directly with ea…

'Buy music' on iMac
photo: AP Images

You could shut down all the P2P BitTorrent trackers in the world but web pirates would still find other ways to share files directly with each other.

At least, that’s the warning from the British Phonographic Industry which, in a survey conducted by Harris Interactive, found that, while P2P BitTorrent sharing in the UK is stabilising, the use of direct transfer sites and message boards is on the rise.

Of the 3,442 people aged 16 to 54 polled, 29 percent admitted downloading music from non-official P2P or direct transfer sites: 47 percent of those admitted using what the BPI calls “overseas unlicensed MP3 pay sites”; 42 percent used Usenet-based bulletin boards, or “newsgroups”; 28 percent used MP3 search engines and 18 percent used links to (legal) file transfer sites like Rapidshare and Megaupload.

P2P users said they intend to increase their filesharing activities by five percent in the next six months, compared to a 40 percent predicted increase for foreign, non-official MP3 pay sites and 32 percent for newsgroups.

This is proof that the music biz’s piracy headache runs far deeper than just P2P trackers: legal action may have shut down the massive Mininova tracker — and may yet kill off the Pirate Bay — but what can be done about users sending each other files through mostly legal means? It’s the digital equivalent of home taping, the bête noire of the BPI in the 1980s which ran a high profile campaign warning the practice would “kill music” (turns out it didn’t).

BPI CEO Geoff Taylor bemoans the fact that illegal downloading persists despite “35 legal online music services” being available in the UK. He’s calling on the government to include measures in the Digital Economy Bill to tackle non-P2P filesharing as well as the P2P menace. Swedish rightsholders have met with success by threatening pirates with fines and disconnection by forcing ISPs to hand over IP addresses — but how do you find out what private citizens are sending each other on a one-to-one basis?

  1. 47 percent of those admitted using what the BPI calls “overseas unlicensed MP3 pay sites”;

    What, you mean people are willing to buy music online if the price is right? What kind of brain is needed to see that iTMS and Amazon prices are currently too high? This is clearly a highly price sensitive market, but the media companies are addicted to high wholesale prices which then means high retail prices from what is effectively a price-fixed duopoly.

    It’s time somebody bought the AllOfMp3 software platform, put a major effort into digitising every bit of audio ever recorded and then experimented with the price to see what maximises revenue. There’s still plenty of money in this game, but as long as they stay attached to the status quo, they’re leaving it all on the table and encouraging us to use sneakernet and 2TB portable drives to get our music fix.

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  2. @jbond your clearly a end user with a opinion with no depth in what it takes to create music and digital media which artist and rights owners do understand There are many things involved in creating music and a one-price fits all is the comments coming from a punter but maybe it’s not for the owner! I’m a rights holder and I want to price my music at the price I want it sold at YOUR choice is not to buy it and move on and this is my right and your choicePeople buying on external sites are not buying because they think they are stealing they actually think they are BUYING! Wake up dude the price is cheaper but the user thinks its legal so they buy it for the cheapest site price they can pay.Buying might mean a sale but in this case it’s a sale to a thief who has no value invested in the product!This doesn’t mean that because it was bought for $4.00 that it is the correct price for the product!Otherwise I want every item in the stores at the cheapest price I can find even if it’s a stolen item being sold cheaper!! Is that your chain of thought!Why don’t rights owners dispel this common myth of the right price and it will sell? This is not about the punters view on what its worth with the fear that if we don’t price it rights they will just steal it? I don’t go into shops and demand a price for a new TV or ill just steal one?I either buy it at that price or I find something else and maybe I shop around for it and buy it cheaper but I know i’m buying and not stealing because if I had to steal it why would I pay anything?You pay the price the owner wants or you don’t buy it that’s it!Illegal download sites are selling it under the guise that your buying legal material and its not the right price point for the artist it’s the right price point for the thief to get rich at no cost to createI have loads of stuff on these false site selling my music and its not even available for download so don’t tell me I can make money selling it at that price as I don’t want to nor do I want them selling it at all!

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  3. Just one thing:

    its written on every legislation:

    power to legislate came from people that elect governants to represent them.

    WE DO NOT THINK THAT P2P OR SHARING IS A THREAT.

    we can change this guys ! let´s make them listen to us

    CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE should be our rule for now and them until they realize that laws should be made for what WE WANT not what some huge enterprise with greedy executives wants;

    wich is: CRIMINALIZATION TO WAGE FEAR TO MAKE PEOPLE BUY BUY BUY BUY BUY BUY.

    ok of course we´ll buy, oh sorry WE DO BUY now but WE CAN´T BUY 250 GB OF MUSIC

    we DO NOT WANT TO PAY FOR EVERYTHING.

    IT´S QUITE THE OPPOSITE OF THE INTERNET.

    SOMETIMES I DOWNLOAD
    SOMETIMES I BUY

    AND I´M NOT A CRIMINAL!
    http://www.loudbeats.com

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