Peer-to-Peer File Sharing and the Market for Digital Information Goods Harvard Case Solution & Analysis

In 2005, over 10 million people have used peer-to-peer (P2P) file-sharing networks to swap music, movies and software for free. P2P programs such as Kazaa, Limewire, and Edonkey received great media attention. Organization of music and film industry believe that downloading copyrighted material has been stolen. The same industry associations took P2P company to court, claiming that P2P-software developers need to be responsible when users illegally copied copyrighted songs, movies and television programs. P2P software makers claim that they are simply promoting technology reuse. Indeed, it was P2P network architecture that can be deployed in a number of other applications, such as distributed computing, instant messaging, voice telephony, spam filtering and other commercial activities. In the midst of high-profile battle between the entertainment industry and P2P-software developers, a number of proprietary systems offer legal downloads have emerged. Supporters pointed to the entertainment industry ITunes Apple, 0,99 per cent per song download fee as an indicator of the future. Although ITunes satisfied entertainment executives to be able to pay for the download is successful, the battle between proprietary systems and P2P-sharing seemed to continue. Who will win in the long run?
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by Ramon Casadesus - Masanell, Andres Hervas, Jordan Mitchell Source: Harvard Business School 26 pages. Publication Date: January 25, 2006. Prod. #: 706479-PDF-ENG

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