Home > Business > Special
Muzzling music piracy
Soumik Sen |
May 21, 2003
In a move to control music piracy that's resulted in a Rs 1,800 crore (Rs 18 billion) loss to the Indian music industry over the last three years, Virgin Records India and Mukta Arts Ltd have introduced copy-control compact discs for the music of Hinglish film Joggers' Park slated for a release on May 24.
The film, produced by Subhash Ghai's Mukta Arts, has been directed by Anant Balani.
A copy-control CD means that the content on the CD cannot be 'copied' onto another CD or be digitised.
"So it is impossible to produce copies of the CD, though CDs usually act as masters for replication making the task of a music pirate easy," explains Shameer Tandon, marketing controller at Virgin Records.
The introduction of copy-control CDs is expected to take care of the CD segment's woes in the music industry.
Though the copy-control CDs are manufactured in the same way as regular CDs, the master CD gets "burned" or manufactured using a technology where the sound waves are encrypted, and the sound cannot be digitised into any specific file format -- like MPEG3.
Tandon says that Joggers' Park was considered ideal for introducing the new technology as the film is metro-centric.
"The film's music is also likely to be bought largely by the urban audiences," he says. The total music market (including the pirated sector) is around Rs 1,200 crore (Rs 12 billion). Tandon expects the technology to help the record labels.
However, the cost of producing a copy-control is three times more than that of manufacturing a regular CD, it completely eliminates the piracy and hence a huge potential loss in revenue.
"We had to get the CD made in Holland, and as of now, India does not have the technology to manufacture copy-control CDs in the country," says Tandon. But bringing in the technology to India is only a matter of time, he adds.
Virgin will also use the technology for its forthcoming album with pop artist Shaan. The album will be launched in August. Despite the high cost of manufacturing the CD, Virgin has kept the price of the Joggers' Park CD at Rs 150.
Perizaad Zorabian and Victor Banerjee play the lead roles in Joggers Park, a light-hearted romantic musical shot at the real Joggers' Park in Bandra in Mumbai.
The film's music has been composed by Tabun Sutradhar. Among the playback artistes who have sung in the film are Adnan Sami, Asha Bhonsle, Jagjit Singh and Usha Uthup.With the acquisition of Mukta Arts' Joggers' Park music, Virgin Records looks forward to market it across the globe catering not only to the Indian Diaspora but also to the crossover film audiences.