Quite frankly, it became an addiction. Active users accumulated thousands of songs, and before too long, this file sharing madness spread into other areas, such as movies and software.
Getting whatever content you want whenever you want it sounds great on paper, but these early networks made it extremely easy to share content illegally, and that’s what they became popular for. Even though the Napster of old and other similar applications don’t exist anymore, downloading content illegally is still a simple task thanks to torrent sites and other dark corners of the Internet.
Of course, it’s not a good idea to be involved in this sort of activity just because it’s easy. For one thing, you’re accessing content illegally, and additionally, hackers love to use interest in illegal files to spread malware. Not only do many of the files contain security threats, but the sites that are used to distribute them can also often be plagued with malware.
Thankfully, if you want to access content online in a legal and secure way, then you have plenty of options that didn’t exist in the early days of Napster. Sure, you can buy a song or movie individually, but the trend these days is focused on subscription services. Part of the appeal of file sharing services is that they can give you access to everything at once, and that’s exactly what subscription services can provide legally for a small monthly fee. There are services like Netflix for movies and television shows, Spotify for music, Kindle Unlimited for books, and the list goes on.
The truth is that many of the people who download files illegally don’t necessarily want to do it, but they feel forced to do it because they can’t access the content in the digital way that they’d like to. Affordable subscription services are turning these people into legal consumers of content, and that’s a better solution for them and the content creators. Not only is the overall quality and experience enhanced for the user, but they’ll also have a clean conscience and avoid the security threats that come along with illegal file sharing.