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Canadians still love music and video piracy: report – National


I’ll admit it: If you go through the files on my computer, you’ll find songs that I’ve downloaded from Napster and other illegal file-sharing sites. At the time – for me it was 2001-2003 – downloading songs illegally was considered silly, even harmless. How can a few downloaded tracks bother a multinational record label or some multimillionaire rock star?

Of course, that attitude was completely, completely wrong, and when I realized this fact, the music industry was starting to go downhill. Fast. CD sales have started to plummet and piracy is clearly one of the big contributing factors.

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My pirate way was killed forever by iTunes. It’s easier to pay 99 cents/1.29 for a high-quality audio file than to suffer with horrible audio, often incomplete MP3 files, sometimes containing viruses downloaded from God knows. Who wants the hassle of finding torrents and sites that seed with new material?

Then there’s the metadata issue, making sure the songs are labeled correctly. Often, a song that’s torrented will have the wrong title, misspelled the artist’s name, or don’t include all the necessary tags. Then you have to organize the songs somehow in your library. Besides being wrong and immoral, music piracy takes too much work.

Since then, I have accumulated thousands of legitimate digital downloads. As I write this, iTunes tells me I have 79,640 items (564.5 gigs) in my library. Of course, not all have to pay to download. Many, much CD ripping along with other audio, such as interviews, mostly related to my work with The ongoing history of new music.

When streaming started to boom in Canada around 2010, most believed it would be the end of music piracy. Why steal something when you can: (a) pay a modest monthly fee and have all the music you could ever want; and (b) subscribe to the free tier on Spotify and for the price of listening to a few ads, paying nothing for all the music in the universe?

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Pirates have been conquered. Except it hasn’t been. And Canadians are still stealing.

According to the most recent report of the International Intellectual Property Alliance (IIPA), a group that represents the interests of not only the recorded music industry, but also TV, film, game publishers electronics, etc., we Canadians are thieves. At 241 pages, it’s a long report, but it can be summed up in this statement: “It is nearly impossible to overstate the severity of the piracy problem in Canada.”

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Drawing from information in a report by the Canadian Internet Registry (the body that governs all .ca domains, among other things), Canadians are among the worst when it comes to stealing works. copyrighted product of the United States. We’ve watched a lot of TV, movies, and listened to a lot of music, but reports suggest the real number is even higher because people consume pirated content.

I quote: “However, there is evidence that the digital market for copyrighted content in Canada continues to face challenges in reaching its full potential due to competition from illegal online sources. By 2022, 22.4% of Canadians access pirate services.”

Almost a quarter of us? OH.

Obviously we’re doing a lot of stream extraction. This involves using software to record a YouTube video stream or streamed songs from Spotify, Apple Music, Amazon, or any other DSP (Digital Streaming Service Provider) . “Dozens of websites, software programs and apps that offer streaming content extraction have found an eager market in Canada,” the report said.

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It continued: “The use of peer-to-peer (P2P) sites remains high, with BitTorrent indexing sites including Rarbg, The Pirate Bay and 1337x popular in Canada. Cyberlocker sites, such as Mega, Uptobox, GoFile and Rapidgator, are also a common way to illegally access recorded music.”

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Music theft is a big deal, but video piracy is where most of the action takes place. The report says that we are “actively engaged” in all the different ways we can work around digital keys and technology safeguards.

Pirate IPTV (Internet Protocol Television) services — sometimes advertised on light poles at intersections — have a wide range of customers. And chances are you know a guy who knows a guy who can equip you with more free TVs than you can handle with a special set-top box. Just Google “IPTV Canada” and see what comes up. I have even seen these boxes sold in retail stores.

More from the report: “Mimicking the look and feel of legitimate streaming services, offending streaming sites continue to overtake P2P sites as very popular destinations for Canadians Search premium content in both English and French. … Canada’s piracy operators remain engaged in the coding and development of infringing add-ons and Android application packages (APKs) that enable registration and market piracy services. public school [set-top boxes] to access streaming services without permission.

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“Few resources are dedicated to prosecuting piracy cases; prosecutors often do not have specialized training in prosecuting such crimes and often dismiss records or defend cases, resulting in weak penalties.”

So what is being done? IIPA believes that the RCMP is too busy to investigate the situation. The local police force is also busy with daily control. There have been a few crackdowns here and there, but nothing has really affected the pirate market. IIPA is asking for more federal funding to fight piracy, set up specialized groups to pursue illegal IPTV sites/sellers, and is encouraging Canadian officials to work with partners Their America.

And you think Canadians are very nice and law-abiding.

Alan Cross is a broadcaster for Q107 and 102.1 the Edge and a commentator for Global News.

Subscribe to Alan’s New Ongoing Music History Podcast Now on Apple Podcast or Google Play

© 2023 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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