Sunday, December 7, 2008

Surviving Piracy

Difficulty drives creativity! Those are the right words to describe the efforts made by our music industry dealing with the devastating piracy.

Yes, creativity is really needed in order to survive the worsening piracy that has plagued our Music Industry. Kompas has quoted Danny Widjanarko/Chairman of the Indonesian Artists Manager Association as saying that only 6% of the Music recording products that are circulating in the market are originals, the rests are fake. Thus, it is for that 6% that the musicians are competing against each other. Based on data of the Indonesian Music Recording Industry (ASIRI) every year the revenue from sales of musical cassettes /cd decreases. In the year 1997, the total sales reached 90 million cassette/cd, whereas in the 2006 only reached 24 million, in 2007 only 19 million and in the year 2008 only 11 million. Due to this fact, the music industry has decreased the requirement to get sales achievement award i.e. the Platinum Award, from 150,000 pieces to 75,000 cassette/cd.

Considering the above, musicians and the recording companies have decided to make music recordings for Ring Back Tones of cellular mobile phones, the total of which according to ASIRI could reach 8 to 10 million songs per month.
As an alternative, some musicians have sold their music recordings digitally through certain websites in the internet.

It is very sad to know that in spite of all the efforts that has been made to improve our Copyright Law (3 amendments, the latest in 2002), such law cannot be implemented, thus IMPOTENT! The worse thing is that many of the fake/pirate products circulating in many parts of our country are made by other countries. Those countries gets double benefits in this case: they get money from the sales of pirate products but they cannot be blamed for it, because the products are not sold in their own countries. And Indonesia will be blamed for circulation of those pirate products (although illegally).
So in this case, the roots of the problem is the same i.e. inability to enforce our own law.
But again, we should never loose hope that one day efforts would be made to improve the enforcement of the Copyright laws, including the ban on smuggling of pirate products.


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