RIAA MIA?

So… the Australian Record Industry Association let’s loose with some figures for australian record sales (and, more broadly, world sales figures). Someone on Slashdot has taken the ball and run with the idea that file sharing has increased CD sales!

Several bits to get all crazy about here… Armchair economists, and haters of monolithic regulatory bodies aside, there are some basic open questions here: Just how do you correlate the data? There are bunches of factors that could be contributing to the declining or rising sales of CDs. The economy could be bad; the music industry could be pumping out crap; file sharing could be sapping the buying incentive by offering a “zero-cost” alternative to the masses… The list goes on.

So, when people try to draw straight-line conclusions from these fugures, it seems like a pretty tenuous conclusionary trail, right?

But what I find interesting in all of this is the fact that that, despite the claims of continuing ruin based on file-sharing (and the fact that it is actually seems to be on the decrease), that any increase in CD sales can be seen across the board. Surely that means something? Or am I just about to descend down a slippery slope…

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