New Study Explores Popularity Of Downloads

By | April 26, 2001 at 12:00 AM

The number of people downloading songs from the Internet on any given day has reached more than six million, according to a Pew Internet and American Life Project study.

In the six months from August 2000 to February 2001, the average daily number of Internet users downloading music nearly doubled, despite the fact that Napster has recently been hamstrung by the RIAA and the courts in its efforts to openly share copyrighted materials.

The study suggests that publicity surrounding the Napster case has contributed to the swelling numbers. Pew surveys showed that Napster users stored an average of about 100 songs before the Napster case heated up. When the case became nearly daily news in July, the number of songs people stored jumped to about 130, and by January of this year that number topped out at just under 200 titles. Since Judge Marilyn Hall Patel issued her March 5th ruling requiring Napster to install sophisticated file-filtering technology, the average number of tunes stored by Napster users has fallen to about 80.

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