John Walker's Electronic House

CW 171

Copyright Watch 171

BPI misery as file sharing fails again to damage UK album sales.

The third quarter sales figures for British album sales were disappointing. Hugely disappointing. As a result of their announcement, no cries of the evils of file sharing were to be heard. No statements that the legal proceedings suing those who share need to be doubled, tripled, quadrupled, before they will take effect. And not a blessed peep about how your downloading mp3s is piracy of the worst kind, funding international terrozrizm and causing the deaths of thousands of tiny, innocent babies. Because in devastating news to the BPI, 2004 was the best twelve months of UK CD album sales of all time, ever, shifting 237.2m units.

With yet another increase in sales, this time a 3% rise on last year, the UK music industry failed once again to demonstrate any shred of evidence for the damaging effects of file sharing. Miserably defeated in their desperate wishes to see the year on year increase in sales just take even the tiniest of dips, the quarterly press release couldn’t even manage to tack on its now-customary comment about how despite the ever-upward climbing graph, file sharing was still robbing your grandmother.

The defeat doesn’t end there. Pirate DVDs, which as we’ve all learned recently are the primary source of terrorism’s, and Jonathan Ross’s, funds, demonstrated no hindrance to the increase in legitimate sales within the music category. 52.1% more music DVDs were sold in the last year than in 2003. Pirates? Are you ok? Have you all walked the plank?

Where to turn? What to do? If sales continue to climb at this pace, people might eventually get the impression that we’ve been lied to about the heinous effects of downloading music. Some people might even dare suggest it isn’t making the blindest bit of difference! And frankly, that absolutely won’t do.