This penetrating and informative book provides readers with the perfect systematic critical guide to the file-sharing phenomenon. Combining inter-disciplinary resources from sociology, history, media and communication studies and cultural studies, Matthew David unpacks the economics, psychology, and philosophy of file-sharing. It fuses a deep knowledge of the music industry and the new technologies of mass communication with a powerful perspective on how multinational corporations operate to monopolize markets, how international and state agencies defend property, while a global multitude undermine and/or reinvent both.  


  • Much too much?
  • The file-sharing phenomenon
  • The structure of this book
  • The claim being made

Much too Much?

Two wars rage today: one to control scarce ‘pre-industrial’ fossil fuels; the other to control non-scarce ‘post-industrial’ informational goods. Global capitalism requires the fusion of energy and information. Managing scarcity in that which is naturally scarce and in making scarce that which is not becomes paramount. ‘Corporate power is threatened by scarcity on the one hand and the potential loss of scarcity on the other’ (David and Kirkhope 2006: 80). That every networked computer can share all the digital information in the world challenges one of these domains of control. In such conditions, sharing has been legislated against with a new intensity.

Scientists ‘manage the horror’ (Woolgar 1988) of never being truly ...

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