Wireless file-sharing is music industry nightmare

Picture the scene, you’re a leading RIAA (Recording Industry Association of America) executive unwinding at home, basking in the glow of recent news reports showing that legal digital music sales had smashed all records in the seven days between Christmas and New Year.

The legal clampdown against file-sharing teenagers and single mums is starting to have some success, you muse. Must get on the phone to that Mr Jobs and demand that he puts his iTunes prices up.

Then another news snippet catches your eye. Swedish students at the Viktoria Institute in Gothenburg have developed a mobile, peer-to-peer music listening and sharing application.

Reading on you find that the Push!Music application runs on Wi-fi enabled PDAs and MP3 players and allows users to actively recommend songs and push them to other users in their proximity.

Sh*t! That means a music ‘terrorist’ could be walking down the street, and simply have to pass near someone with a similar music taste, for their devices to automatically transfer music files.

How will we track them and sue them? Rather than these people having to actively look for music, music will find them. Short of arresting every wi-fi enabled PDA and MP3 user what are we to do?

You break into a hot sweat, the nerves suddenly shot to pieces. Rushing to the medicine cabinet you sweep the bottles aside. Where is that valium? This is the stuff of nightmares.