Case Study One
The first report in question, which was published in 2004, was written by Felix Oberholzer-Gee (Harvard Business School, Massachusetts) and Koleman Strumpf (University of North Carolina), entitled The Effect of File Sharing on Record Sales: An Empirical Analysis.
According to a New Scientist report,
Oberholzer-Gee and Strumpf monitored 680 albums, chosen from a range of musical genres, downloaded over 17 weeks in the second half of 2002. They used computer programs to automatically monitor downloads and compared this data to changes in album sales over the same period to see if a link could be established.
The 54-page report highlights that
- For albums with more than 600 000 copies sold, each 150 downloads corresponded to one more album sale.
- For least popular music, there is only a slight decline in sales when the music was downloaded.
The two concluded, “Downloads have an effect on sales which is statistically indistinguishable from zero.”Back to top
Case Study Two
A music store. [Self-taken image]
A survey in 2005 conducted by digital music research firm The Leading Question, Music pirates spend four-and-a-half times more on legitimate music downloads than average fans, found that engaging in DCI correlates with an increased spending on legal music downloads. In a survey of 600 music fans in Britain to find out their illegal and legal downloading habits, the report found that music fans who download or share illegal copies of music and the average fan spent £5.52 and £1.27 respectively on legal music downloads.
Quite clearly, this report shows that people who engage in DCI of music do consume legal music as well, and in fact four-and-a-half times more than the average music consumer does. Consequentially, profits have actually been gained from this group of people by the music industry; while they do in fact consume unlicensed music, such empirical evidence shows that they consume legal music as well.