I've Downloaded Music Illegally, Who Hasn't?

With it recently being revealed that Ed Sheeran's '+' was illegally downloaded more than any other music album in the first half of 2012, racking up an average of 55,512 times each month, I give my two cents on the effects of music piracy on the industry.
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With it recently being revealed that Ed Sheeran's '+' was illegally downloaded more than any other music album in the first half of 2012, racking up an average of 55,512 times each month, I give my two cents on the effects of music piracy on the industry.

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Music, as a whole, has taken many great leaps throughout the late 20th century and early 21st century due to technological advancements, aiding the production, creation and distribution of music. Although music is much easier to listen to, find and ultimately purchase in this current age of technology, it goes without saying that there are also some problems amongst the improvements.

One of the most controversial aspects of the modern age of music is piracy. By the way, for those of you who assume I am going to talk about Captain Jack Sparrow and his voyages on the Black Pearl, you are sadly mistaken. It is estimated that 95% of downloads today are illegal and due to many people downloading an artist’s album/song for free illegally, it means that the artists and record companies  themselves do not get paid. If everybody did this, it would take an astronomical amount of money out of the industry which eventually means that the record companies wouldn’t be able to produce the music you pirates love anymore. You pirates are treading on your own booted toes. Scurvy dogs.

 It is estimated that 95% of downloads today are illegal and due to many people downloading an artist’s album/song for free illegally

Many of you reading this article may be thinking “But what? Everyone else does it”.  To an extent you are probably correct. You all probably remember (hopefully as you might as well not carry on reading this paragraph) that advert against piracy, where you saw a few clips of people stealing things such as DVD’S and CD’s. “PIRACY IS THEFT. PIRACY IS A CRIME”. To an extent the government funded ad campaign was correct, as taking something for free which has a price tag upon it is theft. But theft removes the original, whereas piracy just makes a copy. So in that sense piracy isn’t stealing. Piracy is piracy. Damn fools.

One company in particular has stood out against piracy though, being Virgin Media. As one of the most popular internet providers in the UK, Virgin Media has banned the website “The Pirate Bay” in a bid to tackle illegal downloads. This may just be a personal battle though, as Richard Branson (the owner of Virgin) once owned the high street giant Virgin Media before it went bust in the UK in 2007. One of the main reasons, I believe, that Virgin Megastores went bust was because of illegal downloads. Why would people pay for something when they could easily get it for free?! Vengeance was on billionaire  Richard Branson’s mind.

 But theft removes the original, whereas piracy just makes a copy. So in that sense piracy isn’t stealing. Piracy is piracy. Damn fools.

On a moral level, piracy is easily wrong. However, if something offers itself up for free and as we are officially in a ‘double dip’ recession, I wouldn’t be surprised if more and more people start to illegally download music, films and television series. I know I have.

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