Why am I music pirate? Why is anyone?
This is the obvious question I find myself trying to answer. You can look at it from a bundle of angles. It's easy, it's free and it's quick. The first one I think is the main cause for me, it's easy to steal something and throw in the last point and it's suddenly a pretty one sided fight. In the world of paying £10 or even above for a physical release of an album piracy will always have it's place.
Recently however I've found myself taking a tangent, mainly due to the wonders of independent distribution. Really it seems if a band want to get heard they need to get their product out there in the marketplace in as many forms as is possible but if they want to get paid it needs to be cheap enough to make tracking down an illegal source a less than worthwhile path to pursue. For indie bands I've found the best form of distribution is a stream it and buy it site. For instance Amie Street is a pretty solid site offering a decent array of non-mainstream music along with some better known artists. Considering you can pick up albums for a few dollars (with a fairly healthy exchange rate from the pound) this can be for a mere couple of pounds. Taking another line of distribution is Ten Tracks, where like the name, they offer ten tracks by various artists for a pound. This is a pretty tidy deal and I first became aware of the site when one of my favourite bands was featured on a compilation, since then I've regularly checked out what's on offer and really enjoyed some music I would never have otherwise have heard. At the end of the day piracy isn't going to stop and it seems as though slowing it down is a sledgehammer to a nut operation but the first step is price. Distribution at reasonable prices will attract more sales and more happy customers. And more happy customers means more sales. And maybe then in our utopian musical society we'll all be happy.