Illegal music downloads fall by a third

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Illegal music downloads have fallen by a third in the past year in the UK. A new report, which was conducted by Kantar Media on behalf of Ofcom, revealed that the number of songs illegally obtained online has fallen to 199 million during the year leading up to March 2013.

The report also found a greater use of legal streaming services as a key reason for the dip.  

That said, one in six internet users admit to illegally streaming or downloading files over the past 12 months, with nine per cent confessing they had pirated music between March and May of this year.

The research also showed that more than half of all internet users (58 per cent) downloaded or streamed at least one item of illegal content during the year. Yet pirating content was still defined as a “minority activity” with a small number of users accounting for the majority of downloads. Just two per cent of internet users account for three quarters of all downloads.

The report follows the news in February that global music revenue had finally seen its first upward swing since 1999, with a nine per cent growth in digital sales.

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