Piracy in the Music Industry
Most of us are very familiar with the issue of music piracy. I think it would be safe to say that most of us have downloaded a song or two without proper compensation to the rights holder. This has been the most visible form of piracy that most of us have dealt with.
NapsterIn 1999 a music sharing service came about known as Napster. Napster allowed users to upload and download any music they wished. This was especially popular on college campuses where student had access to high speed internet. The appeal of Napster is that it was a very user friendly interface, making it easy for anyone with any small amount of computer skill to upload and download music and movies.
Napster was shut down on many college campuses as a result of it tying up network traffic. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Napster)
Legal Challenges to NapsterIn 2000 the legal challenges against Napster began to flow in. One of the most vocal opponents to Napster was the band Metallica, Dr Dre also joined in suit against Napster. Eventually the Ninth Circuit of Courts, a United States Federal Court, forced Napster to shut down. This was the first case of a record label suing a peer to peer file sharing network.http://online.wsj.com/article/SB981994149132463723.html
LimeWireLimeWire is another major peer to peer file sharing network. As of October 26, 2010 they have been ordered to stop distributing the LimeWire software. They demand that "any person downloading or uploading copyrighted works in any manner cease and desist from doing so" .http://www.limewire.com/
LimeWire is a bit torrent client, peer to peer file sharing, that also uses the Gnutella network. Gnutella is the largest peer to peer network. LimeWire is known for the abundance of computer viruses embedded in the files. This made it much more unpopular among less knowledgeable users.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LimeWire
iTunes has been widely adopted and supported by the RIAA (Recording Industry Artists of America). This service is preferred by the music industry because users are forced to pay for the music they wish to download. These payments are used to pay royalties to the artists. The popularity of iTunes has fueled Apples growth. More people have Apple devices (iPod, iPhone) to mange their music than any other MP3 Player.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ITunes
Music Piracy Today
Music Piracy does still exist today, but not to the extent that it did 10 years ago. Today, more people are paying for their music than ever before. Most of the music sharing is done outside of the US. You are more likely to find pirated music on the streets of Asia, than here. This is form not only the rise in iTunes, but with more stringent enforcement of copyright violation laws.
THE FOLLOWING IS STRAIGHT FROM THE RIAA WEBSITE: THEY SAY IT BEST SO WE JUST WANTED TO QUOTE THEM DIRECTLY. WE PROVIDE THIS QUICK GUIDE TO HELP YOU AVOID PROSECUTION FROM PIRACY
"WHAT IS ONLINE PIRACY?
Music theft is a real, ongoing and evolving challenge. Both the volume of music acquired illegally without paying for it and the resulting drop in revenues are staggering. Digital sales, while on the rise, are not making up the difference.
Common Examples of Online Copyright Infringement:
You make an MP3 copy of a song because the CD you bought expressly permits you to do so. But then you put your MP3 copy on the Internet, using a file-sharing network, so that millions of other people can download it.
Even if you don’t illegally offer recordings to others, you join a file-sharing network and download unauthorized copies of all the copyrighted music you want for free from the computers of other network members.
In order to gain access to copyrighted music on the computers of other network members, you pay a fee to join a file-sharing network that isn’t authorized to distribute or make copies of copyrighted music. Then you download unauthorized copies of all the music you want.
You transfer copyrighted music using an instant messenging service.
You have a computer with a CD burner, which you use to burn copies of music you have downloaded onto writable CDs for all of your friends.
Somebody you don’t even know e-mails you a copy of a copyrighted song and then you turn around and e-mail copies to all of your friends."http://www.riaa.com/physicalpiracy.php?content_selector=What-is-Online-Piracy
How many of you have illegaly downloaded music? If so, Do you still do it? If not, what made you stop or why have you never done it?