In The Impact of Internet on the Mass Media in Europe, pp. 251-263
Editor: Nikos Leandros
Suffolk, UK: Abramis, 2006



This chapter discusses from a sociological perspective several of the issues raised by the proliferation of the peer-to-peer networks and their impact on the artistic communication. Based upon an account of previous conflicts generated by the response of the recording industry to new channels and media for the dissemination of music, it outlines the industry's permanent strategic goal.

In this context this chapter argues that the peer-to-peer networks signify a new phase in the pursuit of the industry's strategic goal. This phase is marked by the contradiction between the new context and the established corporate policy.

The paper gives special emphasis to the cultural and political consequences and ramifications of this contradiction, as well as to the paradoxes and contradictions generated by the inconsiderable pursuit to control the dissemination and the uses of cultural goods and finally the access to them. It underlines also that the outlined corporate strategy affect the artistic creativity, the everyday culture of the audiences, as well as the cultural field in general. As a final point, this chapter argues that the attitude of the (major) recording industry in the case of the P2P networks indicates that the corporate culture might prove culturally and politically one-sided and reckless, unless it is counterbalanced by other forces.