The Number of Brits That Download Music Illegally Is Falling

Jeff Dugan
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In Britain, the number of individuals that download music illegally is shrinking. That is according to YouGov, an international Internet-based market research and data analytics firm based in the UK. YouGov’s Music Report has revealed that the proportion of Britons that download music illegally has dropped from 18 to 10 percent over the last five years.

The report also notes that the ratio is set to tilt even further in favor of legal music purchases as time goes by, with 22% of those that are still currently downloading music illegally saying that they expect to stop doing so over the next five years. The prospective decrease can be in part attributed to the fact that 36% of respondents find that using unverified sources to access music is becoming increasingly difficult.

Another factor contributing to the decline is the rise of streaming services. Over six in ten (63%) of those that have stopped downloading music illegally have turned to streaming services.

Interestingly, YouGov quotes to survey participants to highlight the motive behind this change: availability and affordability. One said that “It is now easier to stream music than to pirate it. And the cost is not prohibitive”, while the other said that “Spotify has everything from new releases to old songs, it filled the vacuum, there was no longer a need for using unverified source.”

The claims are corroborated by other stats from the study:  Of those that continue to download illegally, over half (51%) said that they find it frustrating when music is released exclusively through one platform, while 44% said that they only download illegally when they couldn’t access the music anywhere else.

Finally, the report sums up its findings: “ Our research reveals a change in behaviour, with those that previously attained music by unlawful means now being enticed by the low costs and ease of use associated with streaming.”

Concluding that for the music industry, “there appears to be some light at the end of the tunnel.”

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Jeff Dugan
Jeff Dugan

Jeffrey is a veteran tech columnist and reviewer. His favorite hobby is scouring the internet for tips, tricks, and little-known tools to get the best out of the web.

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