Is Downloading Free Music from the Internet Legal?

Topics: File sharing, Music industry, Peer-to-peer Pages: 3 (936 words) Published: August 18, 2012
Is Downloading Free Music from the Internet Legal? Nowadays, it is extremely easy to download free music from the internet. All someone has to do is download some peer to peer file-sharing application such as Kazaa, Edonkey, Blubster, or Bearshare, and you have unlimited access to download just about anything that you please. But is downloading free music from one of these applications legal? I think that it is. This paper will look at both sides of the argument. The first online peer to peer file-sharing application was Napster. Napster allowed people to copy music from their CDs onto their computers in mp3 format. They then allowed other members of Napster to download these songs onto their computers. Once this caught on, millions of people were downloading thousands of songs a day. And as you can imagine, this did not make the record companies happy with the idea that people were getting their music for free instead of buying the CD. It also caused a problem with some of the recording artists. Most notably Metallica. In 2000, Metallica filed a lawsuit against Napster and won. As a result, Napster banned about 300,000 of its users who were sharing Metallica songs. Soon after, the RIAA (Recording Industry Association of America) filed a suit against Napster and the file-sharing server was forced to shut down. You kind of have to wonder if the downloading of mp3s really hurt the recording artists. When the artist makes a CD, they make relatively little money from it. Most of the millions that an artist makes is from merchandising and endorsements. Most of the money from CD sales goes to the record industries executives. In an article from Young Money(An American Recording Label), Meredith Corbin states that “the executives from the recording industry should change the way they operate by either lowering the price of CDs or taking a pay cut.” I totally agree. The executives and artists make more money than they will ever need. And by losing a few pounds or...
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