So Grokster finally “closed down” its music file sharing service and on the face of it this is key victory for the music industry. However in practice it doesn’t actually achieve much more than a token victory. The problem with decentralised file sharing networks is that you can’t close them down. All Grockster have done is all that they can do: stop distributing and making available the Grockster client to new users. So the network can carry on as it likes. However, many Grokster users will have already moved on to other networks and in any case Grokster was never a P2P heavyweight in the sense that Napster, Morpheus or Kazaa were.
It’s a battle (of sorts)won but how far does it go to winning the war? Our latest European music research suggests not very far: unlike in the US, file sharing in Europe is at best static. Click here to find out more.