In 2009 the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) estimated 95% of all digitally downloaded music was obtained illegally. This leaves only 5% of potential revenue to be distributed between all those who play a part in today’s music culture, including the most affected group, songwriters and music publishers.
While some opponents dispute that number, few serious observers would dispute that piracy has cost the industry billions of dollars. The outcome of this piracy is more harmful than most people truly understand. There are currently over 70,000 U. S. jobs affected and 2.7 billion dollars in earnings lost in music and related manufacturing and retail industries, according to a recent independent report. More precisely, it has been estimated that the total impact of illegal downloading and piracy equates to 12 billion dollars of direct and indirect revenue lost annually in the U.S. economy. Something must be done to protect the art, industry, and creators of music from this threat.
Because of this dilemma, my client, Save the Music America, was formed and plays a increasingly influential role in spreading the word of the harm that is caused when people download music illegally. STMA is a new non-profit organization whose mission is to educate the public and create awareness of intellectual property protection and copyright laws. The goal of STMA is to produce future generations with a conscience, preserving the arts and the constitutional rights of people within the creative industries, as well as the history of American music. On their website, STMA states its purpose as: