The Industry needs to STOP blaming illegal downloads

I said it.

The decline in recorded music has generated a considerable amount of discussion within the music industry and the major record labels, who have blamed the demise on file sharing, burning and downloading.

“Album sales were down 11 per cent in 2007, from 2.09 billion, in figures that include paid-for downloads. In 1985, unit sales were 1.8 billion, as the CD began to increase in popularity, a run of growth that peaked in 1996 with sales of 3.4 billion. Record company revenues tumbled 8 per cent last year to $19.4 billion, after CD sales fell 13 per cent – more than offsetting the 34 per cent growth in the smaller digital business.” (Sabbagh, 2008, The Times).

Music industry experts, bloggers, music critics and economists find this explanation lacking and believe the inability to adapt to a changing distribution landscape is the main source of the problem. Record companies should have responded to prevent such a dramatic fall of sales for recorded music worldwide.

File sharing, burning and downloading is proved to be an encouragement to potential buyers but is not the only reason for this downfall. File sharing slightly decreases the sales for popular artists yet increases sales for unknown artists, which does results in an even balance of recorded music sales.

The industry has almost completely forgotten about:

  • The generation of the Baby Boomers (1946-1964) and Generation X (1964-1979) have been part of a CD replacement of vinyl boom for the past 15 years, which is only now slowing down.

  • Economy downfall

  • OVER PRICING of the cd

  • competition with gaming and other entertainment

  • The Music Industry becoming segregated and overwhelmed and so, more competitive


No wonder recorded music sales are on the downfall!

Record companies need to reform and modernise the thought of mass market solutions and embrace the theory of niche markets, overlapping societies, fresh revenue streams and alternative economic models.

Why not make the industry a subscription based one?

Everyone pays $10, $20 or $30 (for a high user) and gets unlimited digital music?!

This may mean, allowing artists to financially trust again or changing the record company model into a marketing centralisation.

A complete change of format is taking place within the industry and I strongly believe it will take the power and joint effort of all within to completely succeed in the digitalisation of music.


And for all those who continue to buy the CD, Godbless you!!

Old news

Why has there been no change then?

Because the music industry is run by greedy idiots.
I agree with everything you posted, but most people already know this and have known for years.
The music industry’s refusing to adapt with the new generation is making people want to pirate music just so their money doesn’t go to such a hypocritical, draconian organization.

I known for long time it was their Greed that would do them in. And it is now coming back to roost. They need to change their mindset until they do that they will loose and loose out to file sharing. People now know why give them the money when they don’t even care about how we want our music. Plus the music group get the short end of the stick as they always been getting, now wonder they are now putting their own music online and selling it that way and getting way more exposures. This is the future the way music is going and the music mongol are afraid of this so they use the RIAA as a wiping stick to do their bullying. But so far all they did was increase the file sharing and loose and loose court cases the most recently one of a lady in MN court case being tossed out cause they had no proof other then they themselves whom download from her… lol… That is ironic they talk about pirates file sharing and they themselves downloaded in effect making themselves the pirate…funny isn’t it…to prove she was file sharing but it was the RIAA doing it themself.

Its a bloody joke taking their OWN consumers of music to court. Pushing your customer away like that is the last thing they should be doing hey.

Im aware ts not a new issue at all, the declines been happening for over 10 years now… really since napster came into existance. Forums like this discuss it all the time, but i rarely have seen people actually discussing SOLUTIONS??

The Music Industry is really the only industry to be so bloody slow with this revolution of technology. Kinda saddens me.

Also proves how money driven and controlled the industry is…

I live in Australia, things are alot more behind down here… but we’ve recently had an explosion of artists leaving record labels behind and becoming pure independants…
I think its great…

but for the artists who are tied to a major record labels, some of the labels have copyright control over how their music is distributed and by what format…
That’s not so good.

How do you think Record Companies can make a positive out of illegal downloads? I mean, be realistic, piracy is never gonna stop.

Maybe music has lost value? Maybe it should be a free experience?

free music>> survey your consumer>> know your consumer>> offer them other revenue streams to make money from >> merch, concert tickets, etc

I get your point. Also I agree the others are right
about the greed[just look at the prices by comcast cable].
However if they are distributing the cd’s ,downloads or
what ever.They are doing it with the permission of the artist
that created it. So I understand their point of view. However
when I purchase the cd,dvd,whatever. I don’t believe they have
a right to tell me that I can’t back up what I purchased because
they own the copyright. That’s where I draw the line.

Completely agree.

If you purchase music, it’s only fair that you have total flexibility with the format.

I think alot of artists choose to be completely under cut by labels, but you’d be surprised how many dodgy deals get sold to un aware artists. I know its their responsibility to understand a contract, but some contracts are just pure evil.


For those who illegally download music, do you ever purchase music?

If so, what is it that makes you purchase that music?

e.g. you want to support the artist? or the music is just better to you?

Well the reason I purchase the music of a particular
artist,or dvd is because I like the music,or movie.
I also do it to support the artist,and the economy.
It’s good for both to be able to make a living. I know
a lot of artist’s have more money then what to do with.
Again you have to remember a lot of them worked hard
to get where they are. Also a lot of them try to give back
with large donations,charity concerts. One here in the
bay area of northern california that I can name is
gives every year to help people and, children with

You see also. The hollywood executives see all
copying even for your personal use as violating the copyright.
I hate to bring up old news but you see PLATINUMSWORD a
moderator a few weeks ago posted a blog in which HOLLYWOOD
was hiring a company in MALIBU california to try and search the files of
pirate sites like bit comet,torrents etc… I think he was just trying to
warn us about it. I tried to do the same thing over one of the copying
software sites,and some of the guy’s misunderstood. Anyway here’s
a recent article that might explain what my point was.

Sorry about the link.Lets try this

ZAP em

Yeah that’s a relevant article. Its not surprising the extend of which Hollywood (as a generalisation- “executives” worldwide are doing this) executives are going to with format limiting. Take ITunes (as a relevant music industry example), it has the biggest slice of the music download market yet people are furious as to their locks on format shifting a song once one has downloaded it.

I do understand why they are so “anal” about consumers having the right to flexible media, but consumers will continue to illegally download so why work against them??

Its music for godsake. Its an experience as much as it is a product.
Artists across the world are screaming out to have more artistic control and slowly, their wishes are being granted. Why can’t I have control over the music I buy?

Heck, there’s so much money to be made out there that isn’t in the regular revenue streams. Let go of the music control!!!

I still think a subscription based industry would beat this.

I still think a subscription based industry would beat this.[/QUOTE]

can you fill me in on your idea of a working music subscription?
should we buy a license to download whatever music we want from where we want in the format we want? if so would this be a yearly fee? etc. (think about it and think about the huge difference between what the industry wants and what the consumers want)
allot of people would be more than happy to pay a yearly fee for the right to download whatever music they want IF they could get it from wherever they want, like torrent sites, but if it’s limited to sites set up by the music industry then it’d be a huge failure.

Well, its a model that would need alot of extensive research and MASS coorporation from all parties within the indsutry.

especially ISP (internet service providers)

I see it as working something like this:

Each Internet service Provider has a built in option for clients signing up. Just like you would have options for mobile packages, cable tv etc

$30 month - heavy user
$20 month - medium user
$10 month - light user

these are just random figures!

You brought up a VERY good point creative nick:
“allot of people would be more than happy to pay a yearly fee for the right to download whatever music they want IF they could get it from wherever they want, like torrent sites, but if it’s limited to sites set up by the music industry then it’d be a huge failure.”

With paying this cover charge, you have “music credit” per month to use up. e.g. $30 will get you X amount KB of downloads but $10 will only get you Y amount of KB . A user is free to download from any site worldwide and download selected artists music.

Now this is where it gets tricky.

ISP has the responsibility to record every song sold to ensure each artist gets paid the appropriate royalty.

Sure, a user could download from a torrent site. But its alomost impossible to track what each artist is to earn in royalties through a torrent site.

Maybe the legal sites ISP could get exact measurements, and the illegal sites, have a estimate?

atleast that way though, every one is paying for music and artists (and other parties) get the royalties they deserve.
People may get pissy at first, but it might just bring the value back to music?

well the way I see Music downloads ATM is we have the “legal” sites, and the “illegal” sites
the legal sites give you:

some people may get a good feeling from thinking they’ve done the right thing by paying for the following inconveniences

DRM (NASTY!! nobody wants this in their media, let alone PAY for it!!)
low quality tracks
a bad user interface and browsing
lack of community
little to no money goes to the band
supporting greedy corporations

the “illegal” sites give you:
complete freedom to do with the media whatever you want
the option of downloading the album in whatever quality you want (v2/v0/320/flac etc.)
an extremely good user interface which makes finding what you want easy and then makes it extremely easy to find similar music and discover new bands while you’re at it without influence from the music industry
great communities who are always willing to help
not a cent goes to greedy corporations!!!

If you’re a very VERY unlucky person you may end up getting sued
the bands get no money at all. unless they actually have talent which will bring people to see them live and buy merchandise or donate (sorry JT and Britney but the future has no place for you :D)

So, I don’t think it’s gonna be easy for the music industry to make a service that people will pay for that’s BETTER than what’s already available for free. It’s an extremely big task, which is why the music industry is standing still doing nothing about the real problem and instead throwing money at the government begging them to fix their own mistakes while suing a few people every now n then.

For me its all quality there soo much of a difference between a cd and mp3 if you take a old recording on tape and listen to it its soo much better.

The simple solution needed for the industry to change is to fire the ones in it and replace them all with people who love the facts and who are realists. However, in this world, those kind of people aren’t in the majority, to say nothing of that kind wanting to be involved in such a mess anyway. So I wouldn’t look for any kind of real improvement on the music industry’s perception or lack thereof of the real cause of their declining sales.

Your right if the music industry,and hollywood greedy
executives continue their persecution of the poor.
I mean by their intimidation tactics,and excessive
high prices. I think people won’t buy and this will
be thje result.