Downloads should worry everyone, especially since the RIAA started suing
Consumer attitudes towards music downloads have changed
dramatically. Legal music downloads have increased by almost 30% whilst illegal downloads have seen a decline of
the same amount. Why the change ? Research in Austria suggests that consumers fear legal action against
file-sharing (illegal music downloads). Not only are you breaking the law by downloading copyrighted material, but
you are also downloading potentially harmful viruses to your PC. Close to 40% of file-sharers in the US and the UK
have cited that the main reason they stopped downloading music using P2P (peer-to-peer) programs such as Kazaa was
due to the fear of lawsuits. Since the recording industry started taking legal action against file-sharers in
September of 2003, 14227 actions have been announced in 12 countries. These lawsuits can cost you tens of thousands
of dollars !
It isn't your average teenager who downloads music illegally on
the internet. You would be surprised to learn that people from all walks of life are involved too. Doctors,
teachers, nurses, cooks, university students, and even a judge ! John Kennedy, IFPI (International Federation of
Phonogram and Videogram Producers) Chairman and CEO, had this to say, "We are now seeing real evidence that people
are increasingly put off by illegal file-sharing and turning to legal ways of enjoying music online. Whether it's
fear of getting caught breaking the law, or the realisation that many networks could damage your home PC, attitudes
are changing, and that is good news for the whole music industry."
Legal music downloading started really taking off during the
first half of 2005, especially in Europe. In the US alone, 159 million tracks were legally downloaded in that
period. Subscriptions to online music downloading services such as Napster, iTunes and Rhapsody now count well over
3 million users. Napster, for example, is expanding its reach. There is Napster UK, Napster Germany and Napster
Canada. Hopefully they will expand into countries like Australia, France, South Africa and many more.
Connect by Sony, Real's Rhapsody, and Apple's iTunes are three
of the most popular downloading services. You can expect to get charged between 79¢ and 99¢ per song. The
monthly subscription charges range between $10 and $15. What would you rather pay ? $15 per month or $15,000 in
court fees ?
File-sharing networks are plentiful on the internet, with Kazaa
being one of the most popular. Yes, the music is free, but you are better off paying the price of a CD per month
and getting your music legally. You can legally download mp3 music on the internet. Get free music downloads from a
legal mp3 download site such as this one !