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Legal Beats Piracy, Study Finds, Except In 'Three-Strikes' France

Posted by: , 13:50 AEDT, Mon October 8, 2012

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New study finds that BitTorrent usage for illegal music downloads are dropping in countries with Spotify, but increasing in countries without the service - except in France, where Spotify and Hadopi still sees piracy rates rising
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A new study by a London research company has found that, in countries where legal music streaming or downloading options are more commonly available, BitTorrent music piracy is actually decreasing, while in countries with fewer options, the piracy rate is still rising.

The Digital Music Index (DMI) report compiled by Musicmetric found that of the 10 countries that had the biggest increase in BitTorrent usage for illegal music downloads, only one of those countries had access to Spotify.

But in the top 10 countries that saw decreasing BitTorrent usage, five had access to the same free (or low cost) music streaming service.

The DMI report concludes that free or low-cost legitimate options may be successfully taking on piracy, something that executives at Spotify have been claiming all along. 

Interestingly, the only country that had access to Spotify, but actually saw BitTorrent usage rise, was the country that has one of the toughest set of anti-piracy laws in Europe: France. France's controversial "three-strikes" Hadopi regime sets out to specifically target BitTorrent users, monitoring their activities, warning them of alleged copyright infringement, and eventually issuing a fine and a Internet ban for those caught for the third time. But despite these efforts, and the presence of Spotify, BitTorrent usage is rising in France, the 5th fastest in the world.


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