WASHINGTON, DC (Hypebot) – Feeling guilty about all that file sharing that you did last night? Pop on over to PiracyPayback.org and make a donation to lesson your guilt. There's no mechanism for compensating individual artists, but every quarter checks are sent to various copyright collection organizations for music, film and gaming.
Free music, the sites creators say, is not the answer. "While we agree that the nature of the music industry needs to change, giving music away for no robust reason lacks imagination and is a cop out – capitulation in face of the not insurmountable threat of music piracy."
In response to the argument that giving away music leads to income from live ticket sales and other sources:
"This angle is flawed as giving away music for free suggests there is no utility in the recorded product apart from promoting the live show. Anyone who listens to music for pleasure with no intention of seeing the live show effectively becomes a free-loader and compromises the market dynamics required for this to work.
The reality is that the music-listening but non-show-going user segment is likely to be significant for a range of reasons such as:
(a) I’m a fan of the artist but not a fan of the artist’s fans so the chances of spending an evening with them is slim
(b) I’m a fan of the artist but work/home commitments mean I can’t make the gig
(c) I’m a fan of the artist but they don’t tour where I live (or don’t tour at all)
(d) I’m a fan of the artist but know they suck in concert
Any music listener who can identify with these statements would have their listening pleasure funded by the concert-going public if labels were to give away music. This could readily lead to a downward spiral as concert prices ramp up to make up the loss – ultimately reducing the demand for tickets and destroying the now singular revenue stream for the entire industry."