By Adam Margolis
On Tuseday, October 23, the record industry celebrated a major victory in the war on music piracy. Police in the U.K. and the Netherlands have been working for two years, investigating a member’s only, file-sharing site called OiNK.cd. The site is considered to be one of the largest sources of not just any music, but most specifically, unreleased albums and tracks from major record labels. In 2007 alone, more than 60 illegal pre-release albums were leaked and made available to the 180,000 OiNK members. Once in the possession of OiNK members, the music immediately became available all over the internet. Supposedly, OiNK in particular has had a noticeable affect on record sales in the last couple of years.
The 2 year investigation and arrest was orchestrated by Interpol, with the help of The International Federation of the Phonographic Industry and the British Phonographic Industry. OiNK’s owner, a 24-year-old man from Middlesbrough, was arrested today in his home-town. Early reports say the site’s servers were confiscated last week during a raid in Amsterdam.
While this is a victory for the Music Industry, I would consider the war on Piracy to be as effective as the war on terror or the war on drugs. For every person or program that is taken down, there is another one on the sidelines, just waiting to have their chance to work. Thus far, the internet is virtually uncontrollable. New sites pop up every second, even faster than they can be taken down. There are at least 180,000 members of OiNK, and one of them could very possibly pick up where OiNK’s owner left off. The government “doesn’t have” the time or resources to monitor ever single person’s computer in the world. Not only would that be a tremendously difficult and expensive program, but it would certainly be even more unconstitutional than the phone tapping that has taken place in this country. Lets hope that this day doesn’t come, because let’s be honest…It’s nice to be able to download a few tracks every once in a while, but If you really do support a band or an album it wouldn’t necessarily hurt to pay 16 bucks for a CD or 99 cents per tune on iTunes.
The investigation of OiNK continues and more information unfolds. Stay tuned for any further updates….
Ben Cohen is the editor and founder of The Daily Banter. He lives in Washington DC where he does podcasts, teaches Martial Arts, and tries to be a good father. He would be extremely disturbed if you took him too seriously.