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Music biz winning vs. pirates

Org claims anti-piracy campaigns cut illegalities by 20%

LONDON — The Intl. Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI) has presented its first online music report, arguing the music industry is actually winning its fight against online piracy.

“The industry is fighting back, and there is now a renewed sense of optimism that there will be a record music industry going forward for many years,” IFPI chairman-CEO Jay Berman said.

IFPI’s research indicates the industry’s anti-piracy campaigns have cut Internet piracy levels worldwide by 20%. After doubling to 1.1 billion files between 2002 and the start of 2003, a series of educational initiatives, coupled with the launch of legitimate services and litigation against offenders, saw the number of files illegally on the Internet this month fall to 800 million.

Says Berman: “We believe the music industry’s internet strategy is now turning the corner, and that in 2004 there will be, for the first time, a substantial migration of consumers from unauthorized free services to the legitimate alternatives that our industry is providing internationally.”

Ted Cohen, senior VP of digital development and distribution for EMI Music, agreed with Berman. “2003 was a good year for us, but 2004 looks really good, and we have proven the there is a vibrant market (in music online).”

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