A new study on P2P filesharing suggests people who download songs won't purchase less CDs:
Birgitte Andersen and Marion Frenz crunched government-sponsored research data, and concluded: "Among Canadians who engage in P2P file-sharing, our results suggest that for every 12 P2P downloaded songs, music purchases increase by 0.44 CDs. That is, downloading the equivalent of approximately one CD increases purchasing by about half of a CD."
Across the whole Canuck population the picture is ambivalent. They write: "Analysis of the entire Canadian population does not uncover either a positive or negative relationship between the number of files downloaded from P2P networks and CDs purchased. That is, we find no direct evidence to suggest that the net effect of P2P file sharing on CD purchasing is either positive or negative for Canada as a whole."
The pair aren't the first to cast doubt on the record industry's public line that file-sharers are bankrupting it. There's been a tit-for-tat battle of report and counter report for several years over the role played by P2P in the well-documented financial woes of the record industry.