Some weeks ago, we published a lengthy blog post called Where do Music Collections Come From? which discussed findings from our Copy Culture survey of 1000 Germans and 2300 Americans.
Some of the data demonstrated that P2P file sharers (who own digital music files) buy more music than their non-P2P using peers (who also own digital music files). Here’s the chart again:
To me, this was a fairly innocuous finding, well in line with other studies. For my money, the more important findings were that personal sharing ‘between friends’ is about as prevalent and as significant in music acquisition as ‘downloading for free’, and that together they are outweighed by legal acquisition.
But the public spoke and the P2P finding went viral: the biggest pirates are the best customers. Headlines like this generated pushback from record industry groups RIAA and IFPI—mostly centered around the work of NPD, their survey firm in the US. The exchange, I think, is an interesting window on the state of the empirical debate around file sharing. Continue reading “NPD Confidential 3: In Which We Defend Ourselves Against Charges of Drunk Blogging and Practicing Math Without a License”