Following on from the jail sentence handed out to illegal file-sharers, Pirate Bay, by a Swedish court; the UK’s top creative industries are lobbying the government to take a firmer stance on persistent file-sharers, according to today’s BBC news.
Up until now, the UK government has not had, it appears, the inclination to penalise such users, quoting such comments as, “We can’t have a system where we’re talking about arresting teenagers in their bedrooms”, instead preferring to place the onus on ISP providers, setting a target of reducing the problem by at least 70% over the next few years, without publicly seeming to actually take any direct action.
The media industry, in the meantime, is being hit hard, with statistics quoting an estimated one billion music tracks and 98 million films being shared illegally in 2007 alone.
In a direct attempt to combat illegal file sharing and compensate artists, Kerchoonz.com, launching next month, is the first integrated social networking and media site to legally enable streaming and download of music, videos and online games, whilst paying the featured artists and creators of music. Its founders, Indiana Gregg and Ian Morrow, themselves Glasgow-based musicians, are ardent supporters of the campaign to introduce firm legislation towards protecting copyright on the internet.
Indiana says: “Free media comes with a price tag and sites who are profiting from the use or exchange of copyright works without compensating the rights holders are simply robbing the livelihood of artists and not only that, they are destroying any chance for new artists and bands to raise funds and investments in their music and/or get record deals. Nobody will want to invest in new music in the future if security isn’t tightened on the web.”