British Record Industry Sues AllofMP3
Call for ‘illegal’ MP3 site talks
UK trade body to sue

As can be seen from these and other headlines around the net, the site is taking a bit of a pasting from the BPI. I can see where they’re coming from but I have one or three questions about it all.

  1. Is this really the sort of thing the G8 should be spending time on? Resolving issues such as fair trade and world poverty are surely way more important than the BPI feeling it’s being cheated out of royalty money?
  2. But then, it’s not really about royalties is it? I suspect the industry is more interested in it’s cut – which I think is bigger than the cut the artist gets?
  3. Apparently is Britain’s second most popular download site behind iTunes, with a 14% share of the download market – I’m guessing their share is actually more than that when their prices are as low as they are! I’d say the BPI should be asking itself why has such a large share of the market? Why is it so popular? Perhaps if the BPI (and the music industry in general) allowed more competitive pricing they’d sell more and lose less?

Anyway, for now I’m a committed CD man – I like the whole package of disk, booklet, etc., as well as the sound quality. That said, I have bought MP3 downloads in the past – legally, I hasten to add – and have been satisfied with them too so I will download again. And that is becoming a more attractive option given the prices I’m having to pay for CDs these days – my tastes lie without the chart mainstream.

So, looks like a very interesting proposition despite the BPI’s concerns about its legality. I’ve visited the site and I’m impressed with the range of artists available as well as the rock bottom prices. This range is better than I’ve seen in many record stores of late and it’s also better than the range on offer through iTunes! If the quality of their downloads is as good as they promise … well, you can see where this is headed.


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