Downloading Music Illegally Is Like Shoplifting

Topics: Music industry, Royalties, Universal Music Group Pages: 2 (423 words) Published: December 5, 2007
With all of the Internet's advantages such as speed and convenience, it comes as no surprise that file sharing of music has developed into a highly controversial topic. At any given time there may be as many as 8.5 million people all over the world busily swapping files online. In recent past an agency known as the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) has began cracking down on these file sharers (mostly college students) by issuing lawsuits, most of which are usually settled out of court for around $3,000. Some students do not realize the negative impact downloading has on the recording industry, but the consequences are severe. Each time an album is downloaded illegally online it deprives the record company of their profit. Not only does it deprive the record company it also robs the artists, producers, publishers, technicians, and retailers of their revenue.

Seems ridiculous, right? Would you go to a shoe store and try on a pair of shoes and walk out of the door without paying for them? Most people probably would not do it because it would be considered shoplifting. It would mean the owner of the store would not receive profit from the item stolen. Other things that deter one from stealing from a store are legal issues—no one with decent morals would consider stealing an object that is not rightfully theirs.

The only motivation for most recording artists to continue creating new music is the fact that they can copyright it, retaining all ownership of their intellectual property, and continue seeing profits long after the music is created. Would you rather live in a world where music is freely distributed, consequently, making artists produce less? Or would you rather live in a world where you have to pay for music and there are tons of new artists creating new music? Likewise, storeowners would not stay in business for very long if all the customers began grabbing items from the shelves freely and leaving the store. The recording industry...
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