Filed under: Announcements & Events, Digital Media, Mobile Phones, P2P technology, Entertainment Industry, Movies, MP3, Digital Audio & Games
A report on why music piracy should not concern copyright holders has been released by two European researchers – Luis Aguiar and Bertin Martens, both working with the EU’s Information Society Union.
The report’s bottom line is that “digital music piracy should not be viewed as a growing concern for copyright holders in the digital era. In addition, our results indicate that new music consumption channels such as online streaming positively affect copyrights owners.”
The two Spanish authors wrote a 40-page report (which was published this month), showing that:
“Although there is trespassing of private property rights (copyrights), there is unlikely to be much harm done on digital music revenues.”
“This result, however, must be interpreted in the context of a still evolving music industry. It is in particular important to note that music consumption in physical format has until recently accounted for the lion’s share of total music revenues. If piracy leads to substantial sales displacement of music in physical format, then its effect on the overall music industry revenues may well still be negative,” the two authors explain.
In their effort to put up together this report, Luis and Bertin used an internet audience service called Nielsen NetView, and managed to look over the habits of 5.000 internet users from Europe’s most developed countries – France, Germany, Italy, Spain, and the UK.
“The most striking differences appear when looking at the determinants of download. Compared to Germany, Spain show 230 percent more clicks on illegal downloading websites. Italy presents an important difference of 134 percent while the UK and France have 43 percent and 35 percent more clicks respectively. France stands out when it comes to streaming, with 150 percent more clicks than Germany. Spaniards have 20 percent more clicks than the Germans, while Italians have 25 percent less. The UK presents a small difference with Germany in terms of streaming, with only nine percent more clicks.
There are various possible explanations for these country differences. First, unobservable cultural characteristics could explain the use of different types of music consumption channels. Second, market forces, and in particular the limited access to legal digital purchasing websites, could influence the illegal downloading activity of consumers.”
If you take a look over their study, you will notice that its foundation is built on two individual formulas, which, according to the authors, makes the report more accurate than similar ones.
Furthermore, Luis and Bertin confirm that the lack of legal alternatives for content that is otherwise unavailable in some parts of the world (for example, the iTunes Store in Austria, Spain, and Denmark is missing certain content, while Latvia’s, Belgium’s, and Germany’s iTunes Store does not) may be strongly connected with online piracy.
“After using several approaches to deal with the endogeneity of downloading and streaming, our results show no evidence of sales displacement. Overall, our different estimates show relatively stable, positive, and low elasticities of legal purchases with respect to both illegal downloading and legal streaming. Across specifications, the estimates of δ suggest elasticities of about 0.02 between clicks on illegal downloading websites and legal purchases websites. If this estimate is given a causal interpretation, it means that clicks on legal purchase websites would have been two percent lower in the absence of illegal downloading websites. Specific country estimates show that for Spain and Italy the elasticity is zero, while it is close to 0.04 for France and the UK. All of these results suggest that the vast majority of the music that is consumed illegally by the individuals in our sample would not have been legally purchased if illegal downloading websites were not available to them,” the two authors concluded.
Not too much of a surprise was IFPI’s response to the report, who called it “flawed, misleading and disconnected from commercial reality.”
Filed under: Announcements & Events, Movies, MP3, Digital Audio & Games, Tops
While the growth in popularity of the music in digital format is obvious and has been noted for quite some time now, when it comes to profits, physical media remains the best source of revenue for the music industry. However, as ArsTechnica reports, International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI), warns that by 2010 in the United States and 2016 worldwide, digital music sales will catch up with CD sales.
“Digital music first appeared as a statistic in IFPI’s measurements in 2004, when it constituted just two percent of total music revenue. At the end of 2008, digital music accounted for 20 percent of the revenue of all music sales worldwide, and has steadily increased by about five percentage points every year since 2005. If the growth continues at this rate, worldwide revenue generated from digital music will equal that of all physical media sold sometime in mid-2016.”
The most passionate digital music lovers are undoubtedly US residents (digital music generated 36 % revenue of the total at the end of the last year). While the digital market in US had climbed constantly between 2004 and 2007, throughout last year it boosted 12 percentage points which led experts estimate that by the end of the next year digital music will generate most of revenue for the music industry in the US market.
Europe, on the other hand did not rush into adopting digital music so quickly and that can be seen from the only less than 11 % of music revenue in 2008.
Filed under: Announcements & Events, File-Sharing Programs, Networks & Services, Legal P2P News & Issues
Illegal file sharing in Sweden began its downward race about four months ago due to two main events that received a lot of media coverage: the conviction of the founders of the largest BitTorrent tracker in the world – The Pirate Bay and the introduction of a new anti-file sharing law meant to help prosecute alleged illegal file-traders. The percentage of illegal file-sharing dropped then surprisingly low by 30% as ISPs were given the power and/or obligation (depends on how you see it) to hand over the data of those suspected of infringing copyright law to copyright owners.
Since then services promising anonymity online saw a real boost and P2POn reported about the matter but according to the local Dagens Nyheter, Swedish file sharing never really “recovered”, on the contrary, it plunged even further to 40%.
Naturally, this state of affairs can only be to the liking of record labels especially that the IFPI also published some figures according to which record sales in Sweden increased by 14% in the first six months of this year and Internet sales went as high as 57%.
Dagens Nyheter quoted IFPI spokeswoman Lisa Cronstedt with a statement full of confidence and persuasion (given that a wave of other public trackers, or even a federated tracker network, probably more powerful than Pirate Bay, originated in Sweden, are preparing to take the Internet by storm, things could easily change): “The law clearly signals that it’s not okay to download illegally that has resulted in several good services on the internet and that new players get a chance to compete on the legal market.”
But the fans and supporters of the site will do more than just shouting out their discontent or express it on blogs – not really surprisingly, they retaliated a bit more serious – according to torrentfreak they’ve organized a DDoS attack against the website of the music industry lobby group IFPI. As a result the site hasn’t been operative for the last hours.
There are many ways for people to show that they disagree with the entertainment industry’s crackdown on file-sharing sites. Some choose to become a member of a political party that shares their opinion, others go out on the streets and demonstrate. And then there’s another branch of people – those who launch a counterstrike from behind their desks.
This is not the first time this happens – back in February we also reported how supporters of the Swedish BitTorrent hacked and deface the Swedish IFPI site. This time the international IFPI site was the one to be targeted.
Allegedly, these latest attacks will probably have others follow as they are part of a bigger action of this sort – Operation Baylout which ‘promotes’ the sending of black faxes to the MPAA’s anti-piracy office and movie industry lawyer Monique Wadsted.
TorrentFreak quoted Peter Sunde (who’s becoming something of a Internet hero) as saying: “I feel peoples’ frustration. I hope they do something more permanent instead, like making sure the idiots that give power to the media industry lose their own power. We need to cut out the companies abusing copyright at the expense of society’s well-being. But this is not a permanent fix so it’s just pointless.”
According to the site a great number of hackers will join their forces (via AnonNet’s IRC channels) to organize a counterstrike.
Filed under: Announcements & Events, Downloads, Entertainment Industry, File-Sharing Programs, Networks & Services
Google wants to show they are really serious about their anti-piracy stand and along with the launching of a free music download site in China this week the giant media corporation made over one million tracks available as free downloads.
Google-powered new site aiming at making Chine music listeners abandon their bad online habits will actually mean a partnership with the popular Chinese website Top100.cn.
The record labels involved in the ‘project’ (as you haven’t guessed by now – Sony, Warner, Universal and EMI) agreed that the revenue generated by advertising will covered the ‘investment.’
China drew attention to its huge appetite for illegal music downloads when an report from the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry said that as much as 99% of all music downloaded over the Internet is not paid for.
Lachie Rutherford, president of Warner Music Asia and regional head of the global recording industry group, the IFPI said that this is the first really significant effort to monetize online music in China (and considering that this country has the world’s largest number of internet users – about 300m, one might think – ‘really, why so late?’).