File-Sharing, Sampling, and Music Distribution
The use of file-sharing technologies, so-called Peer-to-Peer (P2P) networks, to copy music files has become common since the arrival of Napster. P2P networks may actually improve the matching between products and buyers - we call this the matching effect. For a label the downside of P2P networks is that consumers receive a copy which, although it is an imperfect substitute to the original, may reduce their willingness-to-pay for the original - we call this the competition effect. We show that the matching effect may dominate so that a labelâ€™s profits are higher with P2P networks than without. Furthermore, we show that the existence of P2P networks may alter the standard business model: sampling may replace costly marketing and promotion. This may allow labels to increase profits in spite of lower revenues.
|Date of creation:||Dec 2004|
|Date of revision:|
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- Peitz, Martin & Waelbroeck, Patrick, 2004.
"An Economist's Guide to Digital Music,"
Discussion Paper Series of SFB/TR 15 Governance and the Efficiency of Economic Systems
32, Free University of Berlin, Humboldt University of Berlin, University of Bonn, University of Mannheim, University of Munich.
- Martin Peitz & Patrick Waelbroeck, 2003. "Piracy of Digital Products: A Critical Review of the Economics Literature," CESifo Working Paper Series 1071, CESifo Group Munich.
- Martin Peitz & Patrick Waelbroeck, 2004. "The Effect of Internet Piracy on CD Sales: Cross-Section Evidence," CESifo Working Paper Series 1122, CESifo Group Munich.
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