The topic of this essay is the contemporary phenomenon of music piracy on Internet. The new computing technologies have provided to the Net users the opportunity to download to their personal computers and distribute to the Web, free musical pieces of art in digital format.
This is a result of a file-compressing technology called MP3, which has made the transportation of music in the Net very easy. This piratical distribution of digital music has produced a great number of arguments around issues related to how art should be distributed and consumed and the implications that a change can have to the music industry and the art creation process.
In addition, the MP3 phenomenon is a part of the contemporary discussions about the ethnographies of the Net and in general about the impacts that the Internet experience has in modern societies. The ways that this essay presents the topic is firstly by explaining what an MP3 file is and by presenting the story of the two most popular MP3 sites Napster and mp3.
The first direction is related to a presentation of the historical development of the music industry as a result of several technological inventions phonograph, radio, transistor, vinyl, cassette, and MTV.
The main intention behind this presentation is to show the ways that these new technological developments have shocked the music industry's existing system of their time, and how they were incorporated by it.
In that sense, one can understand that the MP3 piratical phenomenon is not the first challenge that the music industry has experienced; many previous technological developments have challenged its status quo before. The second direction of arguments is mostly related to a critical presentation of the implications of MP3 for the modern musical industry and society in general.
Therefore, this essay is an attempt to present the structure of the first MP3 communities although we still do not know much about themtheir musical consumption as a social phenomenonand the implications that these have to music industry.
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Moreover, this essay is attempting to present the impacts that the MP3 phenomenon has on artists and on the art creation process. Finally, the last chapter of this essay examines the political implications of this phenomenon, as a subversive political action.
Before explaining what an MP3 is, a clarification of modern music technology is useful. Music CDs, tapes, and vinyl discs reproduce sound through a 'so called' analogue format. This means - simply - that various devices can play music by reading physical bumps or grooves of the surface of the media.
In contrast, computers reproduce music by using a digital format. This is a technology that converts these bumps or grooves into number combinations, called algorithms, which the computer translates into sound waves called WAV files.
These algorithmic files have the disadvantage that they take a large amount of space, making storage and transfer difficult.
The solution to these problems has come in the creation of MP3. The acronym MP3 is derived from the group that discovered it. The Moving Picture Experts Group was based in the Fraunhofer Institute for Integrated Circuits in Germany and its purpose, which started inwas to create a high quality, low memory music file [ 1 ].
They knew that the human ear cannot hear all the frequencies that a WAV file has, so they decided to eliminate all those sound frequencies that a human ear fails to pick up, thus reducing file size.
Does this reduction in size affect the quality of a MP3 sound file? In this case it loses a noticeable amount of sound quality. By reducing the file only to one-tenth of its original size, the resultant sound quality appears to be unaffected. Consequently, an MP3 file is what researchers were looking for, since it requires less storage and memory, is an easy transferable file and has the sound quality of a full WAV file.
In other words, as Jon Cooper and Daniel M.Far from killing music, home taping arguably revived a record industry that was in decline back in the s.
Surely, it was thought, the digital file would have the same effect. Today, the music industry in the United States faces its largest challenges to date.
Having been fairly static for an extended period of time, the sector seemed long overdue the drastic change it would face entering the 21 st century. Napster & MP3: Redefining The Music Industry Introduction Napster was the first, very innovative music technology application that allowed users to download MP3 from the .
Through a process commonly called “peer-to-peer” file sharing, Napster allows its users to: (1) make MP3 music files stored on individual computer hard drives available for copying by other Napster users; (2) search for MP3 music files stored on other users’ computers; and (3) transfer exact copies of the contents of other users’ MP3.
The music industry was determined to never let anything like that ever happen again to their business. Analysing the MP3 Phenomenon An Internet experience. The MP3 phenomenon - as a crucial contemporary issue for the music industry - is an example of the effect of the World Wide Web on the structure of global society.
In , the music industry files one of the first lawsuits challenging digital technology.
Frank Music Corp. files a suit against the online service CompuServe on behalf of the more than