With recent court actions closing down The Pirate Bay and other BitTorrent sites one would think that the days of free music and software are coming to an end. That was until I received a report today on the number of BitTorrent downloads for my CDs and videos.
Your torrents have been downloaded 22552 times in 157 different countries
Now in some ways I should take this as a compliment I suppose. It’s nice to know that people are listening to my music. But considering that these free downloads have been of complete CDs of about fifteen tracks each, that makes a total of 338280 tracks. The current price for purchased tracks is between $0.55 and $0.99 per track. Depending on where you buy them.
A little quick arithmetic tells me that this would have been a lot of money! Even at the small royalty rate I receive, this would have helped me eat and drink better, that’s for sure.
Like anything new though, the internet is maturing and the days of free, free, free are slowly diminishing one would hope.
However a new marketing tool is being used now that is turning this direction back in almost a full circle. I was interested to read that many of the bestselling e-books for Amazon’s Kindle are in fact priced at $2.00 and many are even free. Not pirated copies, but legal free copies distributed by the major publishing houses.
So as careful as I have been to protect my books from pirating and PSP file sharing, I find I am now competing in a market where the major distributors are prepared to offer Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen for $2.00. A little hard for me to compete at the standard price of $9.99.
Another related site I wonder about is Google Books. I have a 20% preview available for my books on this site. But when I see over 200 visits in one day to one book, I get the feeling that someone has found a way to access my book in totality.
As with all things internet, the more we progress, the more questions there are to ask.