The spending pyramid of music has inverted. The cost of a concert ticket has climbed dramatically while the price of an album if you have a torrent or streaming service at least, free.
ExtraTorrent, one of the biggest and oldest torrent sites on the internet released the top 20 films and music downloaded. There are no figures but the ExtraTorrent team told Torrent Freak that the top ten had been downloaded at least 10 million times. Quick bit of methodology- the number represents the downloads of .torrent files from the site and aggregates different downloads of the same media.
Top 20 Torrent Titles
- Drake – Nothing Was The Same (Mp3 Album)
- Maroon 5 – Payphone (feat.WizKhalifa Explicit) (Mp3 Track)
- Jay-Z – Magna Carta Holy Grail (Mp3 Album)
- Iron Man 3
- The Expendables 3
- Fast And Furious 6
- The Hunger Games
- The Hobbit – The Desolation of Smaug
- Captain America: The Winter Soldier
- The Amazing Spider-Man
- Beyonce – 4 Deluxe Edition (Mp3 Album)
- The Wolf of Wall Street
- Rihanna – Unapologetic (Mp3 Album)
- Lil Wayne – No Ceilings (Mp3 Album)
- Justin Timberlake – The 20/20 Experience (Mp3 Album)
- Daft Punk – Get Lucky
- Kick (Bollywood movie)
- Ariana Grande – Problem (ft. Iggy Azalea) (Mp3 Track)
- Pirates of the Caribbean On Stranger Tides
- Avengers XXX – (XXX)
If we do some rough maths Drake roughly lost $140 million dollars on his $13.99 album Nothing Was The Same. Ouch. Equally huge amounts of data are being shared- about 797 petabytes during 2015, remember that one petabyte is about a million gigabytes.
TV shows and films can range in size from 100mb to tens of gigabytes. Albums range in the 50-200mb range. Approximately 20% of home based broadband internet users regularly access music services that infringe on copyright.
The exponential growth of digital media means torrenting has become the norm for millions. VPNs offer a way to negate national privacy laws. Usage of virtual private networks increased by 17% from 2013 to 2014 and doubled since 2011. but future legislation such as TTIP and CETA could extend intellectual property laws into sharing hotspots in Europe.
The effects of the piracy movement on labour is telling. In the United States the Nashville Songwriters Association International reports that the number of full-time songwriters in Nashville has falled 80% since 2000 and is at its lowest since 1991. Similarly the Writer’s Guild Association says that screenwriters’ earnings are down almost 25% from 2009. The number of musicians and singers in the Bureau of Labor Statistics is 39,260- down from 53,940 in 2002.
Perhaps the silver lining is that shitty social economic and political conditions tends to produce the best, most human art and music. And the internet does have the ability to support independent music- there is still work to be done though.