BPI Effectively Admits That Digital Economy Act Was Useless

from the reading-between-the-lines dept

Every time I come across BPI, the UK's version of the RIAA, I'm amazed at how single-minded its focus seems to be. There's little interest in improving profitability for record labels. There's little interest in creating better music. There's little interest in smart new business models. It's only about "piracy" and how evil it is. What's funny is I saw the BPI's Geoff Taylor on a panel a couple years ago, and he was one of the people who would say two sentences in a row that would contradict each other. It was always something along the lines of: "We should stop 'going to war' with our customers... but first we have to stop piracy!"

This past year was a banner year for BPI. The UK market has bucked the trend in pretty much every other part of the world and has seen recorded music sales growing, while its overall music industry (if you count how much money musicians actually make -- beyond just recorded music sales) has been growing for quite some time. Even with all of that, BPI was able to push through the incredibly draconian Digital Economy Act in the UK via questionable means.

So BPI should be thrilled, right? In the midst of a recession, and a massive decline in recorded music sales everywhere else in the world, it was able to buck that trend even before it got this new law passed.

But no, to BPI, absolutely everything is about "piracy." It's put out a new report whining that "piracy" is still increasing and saying it's all Google's fault. Of course, this isn't a surprise as BPI has been trying to set Google up for a lawsuit.

Of course, by my reading of this new study, BPI is effectively admitting that the Digital Economy Act was useless. The industry was already growing before it, so the main reason behind it was to help slow down the dreaded "piracy." And it failed in doing that. So, shouldn't BPI now support a repeal of the Digital Economy Act?

Filed Under: blame, copyright, downloads, piracy, uk
Companies: bpi, google


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  1. icon
    PaulT (profile), 17 Dec 2010 @ 4:07am

    Re: Industry representative bodies, represent the industry, they are charged to represent.

    "They are not making up the idea's or rules, they are stating what the industry is telling them. They are representing the industry."

    ...and so if the BPI/RIAA is being criticised, the industry as a whole is criticised by extension. Where's the problem?

    "can see they are losing money from piracy"

    That has yet to be proven with any accurate or realistic figures. Kind of important, especially when referring to a growing market life the UK. A market which happens to have been growing in a region that's been given access to new innovative business models such as Spotify as well as regional access to other services like Amazon that's blocked in many other markets. Interesting correlation and maybe a sign that free and reasonably priced access to music rather than "fighting piracy" with lawsuits is the answer.

    "the only person questioning those means is you"

    As ever, you seem to miss the complete point of an opinion blog. Of course it's only Mike's opinion - it's his opinion blog, and the issue is stated as an opinion. He backs up his opinion with clear reasons why he holds that opinion - more than I've ever seen you do.

    " a statment made of a false premise is still a false statement no matter how long ago you made it"

    So, what was the false premise? Which of Mike's stated reasons for feeling the way he did was wrong?

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