Jul 9, 2009 General
Posted by Aditya
Piracy of Music Production Software:
This is an area very very close to my heart… and stomach!
Because this is what keeps my fuel at home burning. And let me also add that it does not give me the luxury of dining at a 5* hotel (a big myth that the software industry chaps have all the money).
After leaving my cushy coporate career (much before it could take off), I joined hands with Mariano of Swar Systems, Switzerland. With Ranjan from Delhi and some other programmers in Pune, we built the world’s first (and perhaps the only) Indian music software called SWARSHALA.
When I hit the market way back in 2005 with version 3, responses from consumers shook the daylights out of me. The SwarShala “standard” version which is useful to learn basics of Indian music, gives 3 built-in instruments (in both North and South editions) for practice, and lets one compose music costs Rs. 1,500. A physical (electronic) instrument set would cost Rs. 15,000 for the same practice purpose.
Common response from consumers (music lovers, students of music, parents, even teachers): “I’ll get it from my computer guy. I’m sure he has this wonderful product. And it will be for free.”
4 years of hard-work on developing a unique software built by a dedicated team (started in 2001), who left their jobs for a dream to give Indian muic to the world. With a price range of Rs. 500 (beginners) to Rs. 9,000 (for professionals).
And in 2009, there are hard core “professionals” in India who still pirate music production software, and use it in their ‘hit’ songs!
Software companies ask us distributors to pick up atleast 50-100 units in every order to be at par on discounts with other distributors across the world. More on this in part 2…
Forget CD sales and music track downloads by the layman. Many musicians who are in the business of music production don’t buy original software – based on which they earn their bread (and other things). Thankfully, we have a few good musicians who do buy. (And such sincerity shows in their work also.)
But how long can things go on like this?
Next: How music software sells worldwide versus India.