Piracy dampens fundraising effort

Italian charity song illegaly downloaded

In Italy, piracy knows no charity.

In the wake of the recent earthquake, 56 popular local artists and musicians recorded a six-minute song to raise reconstruction funds. The uplifting collaboration, titled “Domani 21/4/09,” features turns by top-selling Italo pop performers Jovanotti, Ligabue, Zucchero and Elisa, among others. The song was distributed online for e2 ($2.70) per download, before going out to record stores for e5.

But filesharing sites put a damper on the fund-raising, registering more than two million illegal downloads of the track.

“I feel frustrated and dismayed,” lamented prominent Italo music industryite Caterina Caselli, who produced the song for free with Universal Music. “This time (the pirates) aren’t going against the interests of the hated music majors, but against tens of thousands of citizens who have to start from scratch after having lost everything.”

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