"The RIAA took a strong step this week by issuing a rash of cease-and-desist letters to top P2P firms. Those actions were hardly unexpected following MGM v. Grokster, but the aftermath for the P2P world could produce some surprises.

But what happens to overall file-sharing volume and CD sales as a result? After all, the core interest of labels is making money, and ending the erosion in CD sales caused by file-sharing. Some observers doubt that the latest strike will have a negligible effect on overall swapping volume, as more off-shore, underground, or alternative sharing mechanisms swoop in to fill any voids left by the RIAA actions. That is certainly what happened several years ago, despite the shutdown of Napster, Aimster, AudioGalaxy, and a host of other file-sharing tools. The demand for easy music was just too great, and the void was satisfied within months. That could characterize the aftermath of the latest purge, though it will take months and several bloody battles before the true outcome is known."

From Digital Music News

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