Music industry refuses to back gamesâ?? illegal download battle

Music industry refuses to back gamesâ?? illegal download battle

By Tim Ingham

August 20th 2008 at 2:29PM

Says games firms should 'educate not legislate' file-sharing of content

The UK music industry has ‘no plans’ to join British games companies in taking direct legal action against illegal file sharers.

As reported by Develop this morning, five games companies have written to 25,000 people in Britain suspected of illegal downloading.

They have demanded £300 in order to avoid further legal action from each of them. The companies, including Codemasters and Atari, also say they are prepared to take an initial 500 people to court if they refuse to pay.

The BPI (formerly the British Phonographic Industry) has disctanced itself from these tactics, however.

Matt Phillips, director of communications at the BPI, told Music Week ‘that working with ISPs to educate consumers is a more effective way of combating illegal downloading’ – rather than charging and fining those who file share.

According to MW, the music industry explored punitive action against illegal file sharers in 2004 and 2005, when it launched a number of law suits against people making music available online for free.

The gaming companies’ initiative was launched on the back of a legal ruling this week where the first person in Britain, Isabela Barwinska, an unemployed mother of two, was ordered to pay £16,000 to Topware Interactive for illegally sharing their game Dream Pinball.