Study shows music piracy on the decline, porn the most popular of it all

Categories: Music News

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Anti-piracy and counterfeiting prevention company Envisional recently released a report detailing the 10,000 most popular files crossing the streams of BitTorrent trackers. Porn has taken the top, uh, seed, followed closely by non-porn film, while music was near the bottom of the list. What happened?

First off, there's a slight problem with the method they use to collect the information, namely, that films are larger file sizes, so there will always be a wider amount of people seeding and leaching popular ones when the study in question is only looking at a snapshot of the data.

This might have caused the number to be a little lower than it really is, because it only takes a few minutes to download an album and a few seconds for a song, as opposed to a couple hours for a film. Since it takes longer, more seeders and leachers are listed, and the files look more popular. That's not to say that the number of people sharing albums over BitTorrent isn't down -- it most certainly is -- but it's probably not quite as low as it looks here.

piechartpiracy.jpg

That said, the study also looked at the number of links found in file lockers, which provided a much more respectable number for music piracy of 10 percent, meaning people are still downloading copyrighted music illegally, they're just doing things a little differently now and again. The totals weren't that high, but the percentage was up.

The traffic for music is still down from its heyday, though, meaning that perhaps people have finally gotten all the Bob Dylan and Metallica records they want. Or it could mean that the content is getting worse -- not that the labels are doing a better job thwarting piracy. You'd think that in the months that saw the worst sales in history, piracy would be through the roof, but that simply isn't the case. The albums coming out right now are so bad, people don't even want to steal them.

Now, that's saying something.

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Leon Steinberg
Leon Steinberg

With regards to music piracy and from an ethical standpoint, I believe an artist has every right to be angry and seek legal action when their recordings are unwillingly sold for profit or bootlegged by a shady record label or download site. It's the intellectual property of the artist, who typically writes and composes their own songs. Not to mention, the artist has developed their own way of performing a song, which is documented within the recording.  

In 2011, a judge ruled in favor of singer Paul Collins, whose  rock group The Beat lost substantial revenue from a series of unauthorized bootleg recordings released by an underground record label. The recordings were unknowingly engineered during The Beat's tours with The Police, Eddie Money and The Cure. Although the label argued that the recordings were tracked and mixed by an independent investor during the 1970s and 1980s, Collins was unaware of these dealings and was awarded an unspecified amount of damages. Collins was granted permission to digitally re-master and officially release the live recordings. In response to backlash and negative publicity from fans accusing him of being greedy, Collins attempted to make a public statement about piracy. In 2012, Collins made the recordings available to everyone as free MP3 download tracks to fans worldwide.

Some fans might argue that Metallica was selfish to target Napster for illegally offering their music as MP3s. In all fairness, not everyone victimized by piracy are platinum-selling, wealthy artists in the caliber of Metallica. Paul Collins had just as much right to take legal action, but he turned the negative situation into a positive one by publicly releasing the pirated material as free downloads to his fans. Case in point, not all rock stars are selfish or "only in it for the money." Musicians have a right to be paid for their intellectual property. People who support music piracy only think about themselves. If a musician isn't being paid for their work, how are they supposed to continue recording, writing, performing and touring? Musicians aren't slaves and if they aren't making enough money to function, then they might choose a different career path that doesn't involve making music.  

Matt Smith
Matt Smith

I think it's also youtube. Why take the 5 minutes to download a song when you can hear it instantly on youtube.

CW
CW

Is it really that shocking? There's no mainstream porn service like iTunes for porn. Streaming sites and illegal file sharing is basically all the porn addicts have.

http://www.thealttab.com/2011/...

Stretch
Stretch

this if prooves that we need better music in our porn movies. "Bow Chicka Wow Wow" is out dated and needs to be revised for the new century.

Felix
Felix

What, people use the internet for something else than porn?What kind of wild theory is this?Data gathering malfunction indeed.

Lol
Lol

music piracy is down because everyone has all the music they want now

Jeff Breen
Jeff Breen

"Porn most popular"; Well this explains why this country is circling the drain.

Rutnab
Rutnab

What about streaming services (Pandora, Grooveshark, Last.fm)? I think these probably account for a good chunk of the piracy and sales that have gone missing

WemiZemi
WemiZemi

LOL, Piracy is on the declien because LImeWire got shut down and people dont yet understand torrents. Give it a little time lol.

www.net-privacy.at.tc

febi
febi

And Porn is the fav topic... This is end of the day...

Peace
Peace

Looks lot like peace sign! :P

Geoff
Geoff

thanks for considering the other statistical causes rather than just showing us a pie chart. you make some really good points.

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