While India and Pakistan may not get along all the time, there is one Pakistani website known to almost all Indian internet users: Songs.pk. They are one of the largest distributors of Bollywood Music for free on the Internet. Millions and millions of MP3 tracks are downloaded from their website everyday. This is what led to the Calcutta High Court banning the website, on the basis of a petition by Phonographic Performance Ltd (PPL) and Indian Music Industry (IMI), and music label Sagarika Music Pvt Ltd.
According to Public Records, Case Numbers 187&23 of 2012 Dated 27 Jan filled by Sagarika Music Pvt Ltd, all ISP’s are to block access to Songs.pk through DNS Name Blocking, IP address blocking or DPI based URL blocking. The intention is to send the message that piracy is to be stopped.
However, no sooner did Songs.PK get blocked, did the website rear its head again with a new URL: Songspk.pk. The new website looks exactly the same as the old one, with just a new URL.
Piracy is an issue that has plagued the publishing industry for decades. When the recordable cassette tapes came out, the industry was in arms against it, saying no one would buy music any more. The exact same thing happened for the Floppy Disk, the Computer Disc and the DVD. Then came the biggest form of piracy ever: The Internet.
The industry needs to learn that by simply banning one or two file sharing websites and services, the problem will not get solved. People will still not pay hundreds of rupees for CD Albums anymore.
Services like Flipkart’s Music Store Flyte are a step in the right direction, with their easy to use site and great pricing. We need more services like these to truly get a grip on piracy.