Dealing With Digital Piracy Essay

4907 words - 20 pages

I. Executive Summary As digital music and the Internet are becoming more and more mainstream, the music industry faces a serious, though not unique, problem: how to adapt the industry?s established and profitable business model in the face of these new technologies. Of particular concern to the recording industry is piracy. While individuals could certainly make copies of cassettes and CDs, widespread distribution of such physical pirated materials would be expensive and time consuming. But digital music offers anyone with a computer and an Internet connection the ability to disseminate music to tens, hundreds or thousands of others at little cost. While many record companies have attempted to handle this issue by distributing its music with copy protection, users have found ways to flout these security measures. Rather than adapting to changing technologies, the music industry has looked to the legal system, typically through copyright lawsuits, to protect its increasingly outdated business model. This paper attempts to analyze how the music industry could choose to deal with a company that is selling digital music out of Russia with no copy protection and without copyright permissions and whether there are options available to the music industry outside of the courtroom.The music industry is riddled with problems that are failing to prevent the music piracy. The consumers are utilizing the illegal music because they do not feel that this type of stealing is as a big a deal as stealing a physical object. The customers also are choosing the illegal solutions due to them being dissatisfied with the existing solutions. The barriers to technology have also been lowered allowing for the piracy. The record industry needs to implement multiple solutions in order to attack the issues. The music industry should continue with lawsuits and lobbying of governments to prevent digital music piracy. The music industry should also look for other ways to prevent illegal downloading besides lawsuits. Other methods should include reevaluating their digital music strategy and trying to find a new strategy that makes music listeners rethink resorting to piracy. A consumer education program teaching the public that piracy of digital media is a major crime is another option. Through partnership, RIAA might be able to take advantage of some of the illegal programs innovation. The recording industry has proven that lawsuits alone will not solve their problems; it is time to try a new multi-step approach.II. Music Industry Background Throughout its long history, the music industry has been able to continuously grow in sales and revenue (Exhibit 1). Though the technology has changed from records, to eight tracks, to tapes, and then to CDs, the music and recording industry has been able to adjust and prosper.Historically, copyright has been dealt with differently on a corporate and individual level. On individual level, technical challenges has traditionally prevented mass...

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