Saturday, April 14, 2007

The maths of piracy

According to Sabiene Heindl, the General Manager of Music Industry Piracy Investigations Pty Ltd (MIPI), "Australians illegally download about one billion songs every year." With a population of around 20 million people that is 50 songs each for every living child and adult in the country. Not impossible, but with broadband coverage reaching only 2,785,000 people (June 2006) in Australia its seems a fantastic figure. For the 2,785,000 people with broadband to have downloaded the 1 billion songs (that's one thousand million, 1 000 000 000 songs!!) each broadband subscriber would have to download 359.066427 songs in the year. Considering many of the broadband connections listed in the OECD figures would be companies and places of business then the figure for downloads per user would be higher. This seems a tenuous claim. But it may scare people into allowing ISPs to disconnect those that download files as the MIPI is trying to gain the rights to do from the Internet industry association. The first casualty of war is truth:

"The Australian music industry would prefer not to sue individuals who are engaged in illegal file sharing, That said, it may well be that at some stage in the future we will have no option but to take those measures. At this stage we think that this is a proposal that will be effective and provide an effective deterrent.":- Sabiene Heindl

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