Does Pro-Music.org explode the myths about internet piracy?

The Music Industry, namely the IFPI, the organisation representing the international recording industry, has been building a multilingual site called Pro-Music.org. The website was launched last May and is supported by an “international alliance” of musicians, artists, performers, record companies and music retailers. According to statements written there, they’re already getting 25,000 hits a day from all around the world.

Don’t worry, I never heard of it either. The idea was to put together a page that promotes legitimate digital music download services and educate the masses on the war on piracy. One thing they have done, is put together an online directory of legal online music services from all around the world. That’s fine. But there’s more, it’s the educational side, the  purpose of which is to “confront the myths surrounding online music piracy”.

Jay Berman, Chairman and CEO of IFPI said:

“The site spells out in clear and simple terms the legal and copyright concerns around online music. It explains the fight against internet piracy. And, above all, it has tracked the surge of new legitimate services that have come on stream in the last year. Pro-music has a vital role to play in improving awareness in this area, and there seems no doubt that the second year of the campaign will be even more important than the first.”

In April 2004, the highest number of visits was from the USA, followed by the UK, France, Japan, Italy, the Netherlands, Canada, Germany, Belgium, Spain, Mexico, Sweden, Australia, Austria and Brazil. Visitors from 100 countries around the world visited the site in April.

Pro-music.org also sees around 1,000 downloads a month including pdfs for uninstalling or turning off the ‘upload’ function of P2P software programmes, and of IFPI’s Copyright and Security Guides for businesses, governments and academia.

Well, belly up to the bar and grab a PDF file everybody. Jay berman has a different concept of the problem than Joe Downloader I am afraid. It seems there’s a lot of information to be read on this site, both good and bad. For instance, the Myths about free music exploded hyperlink could raise a literate persons blood pressure with some of the misleading and carefully worded comments. Interestingly, they do not refer to any studies of their own to back up their many claims. Business as usual.

On the other hand, it beats suing folks. Also, the Praga Khan, (Lords of Acid) link may make you feel bad for them, Brian Wilson too. Of course, we all know that piracy is only part of the problem of lack of compensation to artists. The record companies are the masters in that arena. We can read this in the news every day. So it seems hypocritical for them to flaunt these talents as spokespersons. Yet, if anyone has a reason to complain, it would be the creators of the copied works. Probably, both sides can agree, that the situation we have at the moment is unacceptable for each party. But, the issue is not as cut and dried as this site and the IFPI would like us to believe. Take a look and let us know what you think. Either here, or in the Music Downloads, P2P and Legal Issues Forum.

Source: Pro Music Online