DFW Music News

UTD Professor's Research At Center Of Pirate Bay Copyright Case

Today in Stockholm, Sweden-based bit torrent site The Pirate Bay entered the eighth day of its trial against International Federation of the Phonographic Industry, which is accusing the site of possible copyright infringement, given its role as a host for torrent swapping. And it's a fairly landmark trial in terms of file-sharing and -swapping on the Internet (for some comprehensive background on the case, check out Idolator's coverage).

Which makes this little tidbit all the more interesting/depressing: Yesterday, IFPI chairman and CEO John Kennedy (not that one) testified to the court and referenced the works of UTD economics professor Stan Liebowitz, which showcase the correlation between file sharing and slumping record industry sales.

A little background on Liebowitz: Back in '02, when Robert Wilonsky spoke with him for a piece on online piracy, his research showed that file sharing wasn't the cause of the record industry's ills. But then, in 2006, he, um, changed his mind.

Anyway, if the IFPI wins this case, it looks like Liebowitz' updated research could be to thank. At least in part.