Illegal File Sharing In The UK Declines

Especially among teens

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[ Technology]

Illegal file sharing in the UK has declined, most notably among teens, according to media and technology research firm The Leading Question.

The last national survey taken in December 2007, found 22 percent of teens regularly filed shared music tracks, but in January 2009 this was down to 17 percent, a comparative drop of nearly a quarter.

The biggest drop in those regularly file sharing occurred among 14-18 year olds. In 2007 42 percent of 14- 18 year olds were sharing files at least once a month. In January 2009 this was down to just 26 percent.

Paul Brindley
Paul Brindley

The percentage of music fans who have ever shared files has increased, rising from 28 percent in 2007 to 31 percent in 2009. The move to streaming sites such as YouTube and MySpace found the majority (65%) of teens are streaming music regularly. Nearly twice as many 14-18 year olds (31%) listen to streamed music on their computer everyday compared to music fans overall (18%).

There are now more UK music fans regularly buying single track downloads (19%) than file sharing single tracks (17%) every month, though the percentage of fans sharing albums regularly (13%) remains higher than those buying digital albums (10%).

Research also found the comparative volume of pirated tracks to legally purchased tracks has halved since the last survey more than a year ago. In 2007 the ratio of tracks obtained via file sharing compared to tracks obtained as legal purchases on an on going basis was 4:1. In 2009 the ratio had fallen to 2:1.

"File sharing is a moving target, so industry and Government policies need to recognize
this," says Music Ally CEO Paul Brindley. "It’s already being somewhat displaced by other means of accessing music for free. Some are licensed, many are not licensed and some involve a bit of both.

"Kids find services like YouTube much more convenient for checking out new music than filesharing. But even YouTube can become a source of piracy with some kids ripping YouTube videos and turning them into free MP3 downloads."


Illegal File Sharing In The UK Declines
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  • G

    I was playing around with Google trends a few weeks back and found this very interesting:


    accurate figures? – hard to tell, but probably not far off. Certainly a bit sad, but hardly a surprise.

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