A new NPD Group survey found a major difference between Mac and PC users, when it comes to digital music. More Mac users listened to music on their computer than PC users (56% to 31%). They also outranked PC users in uploading to MP3 players (34% to 16%) and purchasing CDs from stores (32% 28%). Mac has always prided itself on appealing to a wider segment of the arts population, so most of these numbers are a surprise.
But one figure was a little bit of a shock: the number of users who paid to download music. Just over 50% of Mac users paid to legally download a track (no specific site was named, so it could have been sites other than Apple's.) Only 16% of survey PC respondents admitted to paying to download music. Considering that 31% of them admitted to listening to music, and 28% said the bought CDs, that leaves anywhere from 15% to 2% who illegally downloaded their tunes, compared with 6% to 24% of Mac users.
I'm not sure what this data means, but I was surprised to see such a large amount of stealing in the Mac community: they're used to paying full-price for top of the line technology (iMacs, G4s, G5s and iPods), so why skimp on the small stuff? Most tracks can be legally downloaded for less than a dollar.
The rampant dishonesty of PC users came as no surprise.