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Spotify Helping Industry Fight Illegal Downloads?
The Quietus , April 1st, 2009 07:42

People now borrowing music rather than stealing it, survey shows

New figures seem to show that music streaming sites like Spotify are helping to curb what had been a rising tide in illegal downloads and peer-to-peer file sharing.

A survey conducted by market research crew NPD Group reported that in the US those aged between 13 and 17 acquired 19 per cent less music in 2008 than they did in 2007, whether that be through the buying of CDs (down 26 per cent), paid-for downloads (down 13 per cent) or file-sharing networks (down 6 per cent).

Use of streaming sites, however, was up from 34 per cent to 52 per cent.

Spotify has not yet been launched in the US and its rapid rise to prominence in the UK could be seen as a sign that the number of people streaming free music on the web, rather than downloading it for keeps, will increase again in the coming months.

Reimbursing labels with funds raised through ads and paid-for membership schemes, could it be that Spotify has hit on a winning formula for the future of music distribution?

“"With popular music sites like Pandora, imeem, and MySpace Music complementing offerings by terrestrial and satellite radio, more teens may be getting their fill of music and feeling less compelled to buy music or share it with others," according to NPD egghead Russ Crupnick.

"Perhaps the next wave for teens comes when just listening to music replaces purchasing actual files, which might end up creating new revenue streams, such as brand- and ad-supported music."