A study reported by both the BBC
and The Guardian
concludes what many "illegal" downloaders have argued for years: people who download music "illegally" are far more likely to buy
music they like once it is available for legal purchasing online. From The Guardian
Computer-literate music fans who illegally share tracks over the internet also spend four and a half times as much on digital music as those who do not, according to research published today. The survey confirms what many music fans have informally insisted for some time: that downloading tracks illegally has also led them to become more enthusiastic buyers of singles and albums online. Unlikely to be music to the ears of record companies, who have previously argued the opposite, the results will raise a question mark over the companies' recent drive to pursue individual file sharers through the courts.
What should RIAA
and their other national variations learn from this report? That music fans aren't assholes. Sure, there will always be people who illegally download all their music and never shell out a cent. However, most
people who download music do so to try out new music and once they find something the like, they'll more often than not either buy a legal version or buy the CD because fans want to support their favourite artists so they'll keep producing more good music
! When RIAA spearheads a campaign to prosecute music downloaders, they're looking for ways to attack some of their most important consumers. If as much time was put into creating innovative and faster ways to allow music lovers to access (and pay for!) the music they love, then the relationship between production companies and consumers would look more like a partnership in musical enjoyment, not a "war" built on the rhetoric of piracy and terrorism which in turn makes those terms close to meaningless.