Impact of Piracy on Music Industry
The global music industry was quite successful during the 1990s. According to the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI), album sales grew from US$24.1 billion to US$38.6 billion during the decade. The industry is now struggling. Sales have been falling for the last three years: global sales dropped 7.1% (to US$30.9 billion) in 2002, 8.8% in 2001, and another 5.0% in 2000.
This downturn coincides with the proliferation of online music file sharing. In June 1999, Napster was created and made the work of many artists available for free. Its popularity was immediate. According to Mediametrix, a company that provides internet rankings and measurement, Napster was the fastest software adoption in history. Given the impact, the Recording Music of America (RIAA) soon filed a motion against Naspter in the U.S. District Court of San Francisco for “engaging in or enabling, facilitating or assisting others in the copying, downloading, uploading, transmission, or distribution of copyrighted musical work or sound recordings protected by copyright or state law without the express permission of the rights owners” (US District Court, 2000). Napster was shut down in February 2001. However, many peer-to-peer (P2P) alternatives to swap music over the internet remain available. KaZaA, a Napster successor, holds the new record of most downloaded software with more than 230 million users worldwide. In all the countries considered by the Yahoo Buzz Index, an index that measures internet search using the Yahoo search engine, KaZaA was the number one search term on the internet in many weeks during 2003.
The development of broadband facilitates music swapping. A soundtrack that takes more than 12 minutes with a dial-up connection can be downloaded in as fast as 20 seconds with a high-speed connection.
Mr. Priyaranjan Dasmunsi, the Information and Broadcasting Minister, in a reply in the Lok Sabha said that, the...