“File-sharing is good for Big Music”

3 Nov ’07

From Jack Kapica, on the just released Industry Canada study of file sharing:

The study concluded that about half of all P2P tracks were downloaded because individuals wanted to hear songs before buying them or because they wanted to avoid purchasing the whole bundle of songs on the associated CDs. Another quarter were downloaded because they were just not available in music stores.

The study said that the effect of a 1 per cent increase of downloading songs that were not available in stores was associated with nearly a 4 per cent increase in CD purchases, which suggests that people are really interested in buying CDs that the recording industry is not interested in promoting.

Michael Geist has extensive coverage as well.

I suppose I don’t need to say that this has rather enormous implications. What happens next? From Jack:

Needless to say, industry lobbyists will dismiss the study immediately; they have invested far took much time, money and effort mounting an intense campaign against the effect of the Internet on their businesses.

But this would not be the way to fight Industry Canada’s study. To answer Industry Canada, the Canadian Recording Industry Association would have to do two things: It would have to come clean about the formula it uses to calculate the damage allegedly being done to its business by file-sharing, and it would have to come up with a manifestly independent study of its own, and release the entire thing to the public.

And I don’t mean its study to be some quickie job done by the research arm of CRIA’s public-relations company, which has produced several “studies” that have supported everything the industry claims.

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