For many years, especially after the advent of the Internet, it became very common for record companies to sue those that were illegally downloading songs on the Internet. It was a very simple process, one that was initially prevented by the lawsuit and victory of the record industry suing Napster. However, due to changes that have happened in regard to federal copyrights, these infringement lawsuits have diminished since 2009 and have actually virtually abandoned the litigation against not only people that are sharing songs, but those that provide the medium by which this is possible. Going down as low as 2000 lawsuits, this is nearly half what was traditionally filed going back as far as 2005, and there is a reason for the diminishing numbers of lawsuits that have been put forth by the record industry.
History Of Litigation Against Those Sharing Songs
If you go back as far as 1993, the average number of lawsuits ranged between 2000 and 3000 every year. This occurred up until 2005 where there was a dramatic spike, tripling that number. Since that time, over the last several years, the number of lawsuits has diminished which seems to be transitioning over to the film industry. The reason that it may have diminished has to do with a return on investment. For instance, the lawsuits have not prevented people from actually downloading songs. In fact, there seems to be an upwards trend in the illegal sharing and downloading of music. The same is true for the video industry, specifically movies, as it seems that the more that lawsuits are filed, the more that these individuals that are capable will begin to find additional ways to share this information.
Why This Will Continue To Diminish
What the record industry has noticed is that, when looking at a span of the last few decades, there has not been a dramatic decrease in the number of sales that are actually made. There have been transitions that have occurred such as the advent of Apple coming out with iTunes, which has become one of their most profitable businesses that are part of the Apple Corporation. It is this ease of access, where someone can order a song for a dollar, an amount that people really don’t think about when they are making an impulse buy, that has generated billions of dollars in sales. People are not so much concerned about freebies as they are a convenience, and that is exactly what you have on your smartphones and other devices where this type of downloading as possible.
Other Trends That Have Changed Their Viewpoint
Additionally, there have been other changes that have motivated the record industry to not worry so much about downloading songs. One of those is the gaming industry, specifically games that are multiplayer games that millions of people participate in every day. The reason that this plays a role in whether or not lawsuits will continue is how profitable these businesses have become. Some of them started just a few years ago and have actually sold for billions of dollars. People find it very convenient to simply purchase coins, tokens, or whatever is necessary to move up the levels, and have no problem doing this. They also are not looking for a way to get free tokens as much because the convenience factor is what is most important to them. This is evident based upon the revenue that is generated by these companies, and the fact that gambling corporations are purchasing these games clearly shows that they see it is a profitable business model. In the same way, when you are able to download a song within seconds that you want to hear, and keep that on your smartphone or another portable device, people will always choose convenience over having to go to all of the trouble to hide their IP address and download songs that may not be available for several hours.
How This Looks For The Future
The future looks very promising in regard to both camps. The record industry is making more money than ever before due to providing their songs through mediums that make it easy for people to purchase what they are selling. On the other hand, those that are downloading songs illegally, individuals that are actually taking the time to do this, and the companies that provide the cloaked IP addresses, are actually making just as much money as they did before, perhaps, even more, showing that this type of focus may not be very important in regard to litigating people that are occasionally downloading on the web.
Although the record industry once thought that it would be a good idea to continue to sue people, creating fear within the masses, what they have realized is that targeting people is not the key to diminishing free downloads. The key is to appeal to the needs of the people in a way that is more important to them which refers to the ability to instantly access the songs on their phone within seconds. Even though they may pay $10 or $20 every single month for the songs that they want to hear, they are not so much worried about because of the convenience factor. Taking this into account, this may be one of the many reasons that litigations are diminishing in regard to the downloading of songs simply because it’s costing the record industry money, and they are making so much more money by using venues that allow instant downloads.