Nearly a third of Net users download illegal music says report

The BPI claims British music piracy on the rise

British Illegal music downloads continued to rise in 2010 according to a new report from recorded music industry body, the BPI.

The BPI said that the UK was “one of the world’s most advanced digital music markets” but said that growth was hampered by “widespread illegal downloading” and that the lack of action against illegal downloading “continues to undermine the potential for the digital music sector to expand.”

“Over the last five years, the legal digital music market has been an online innovation success story. There are now 67 legal digital music services operating in the UK, offering a vast choice of new songs and catalogue that can be browsed, streamed or bought online,” said BPI boss Geoff Taylor.

“Unfortunately, the enormous scale of the piracy problem shows no signs of abating. Almost eight million people in the UK continue to download music illegally according to research presented in this report.”

The Digital Music Nation 2010 report (pdf), conducted by research outfit Harris Interactive, found that nearly a third of British Internet users have been engaged in illegal downloading.

The BPI said that the cost to the industry was £984m in lost retail sales. Harris urged action on shoring up the anti-piracy measures in the Digital Economy Act, noting that presently just 12 per cent of the illegal downloaders were concerned about being caught.

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