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See that person sitting in the cubicle next to you? One of you is probably using P2P networks to download music, movies, and software, statistically speaking. According to not one, but two recent studies in Canada and Spain, nearly half of all internet users are doing it.
The results of both studies were pretty much in line with each other with roughly half of the respondants indicating that they regularly use file-sharing software, nearly a third admitting to using P2P for dubious purposes, and as little as just 1 percent saying they find downloading copyrighted files is "not a big deal."
"The results of these two reports clearly show that public opinion is changing in favor of P2P users," writes TorrentFreak.com. "Unlike 10 years ago, people are now used to unlimited access to all kinds of information, much of it thanks to Google."
But while the general public might be coming to terms with P2P, content studios and ISPs aren't as accepting. Other recent studies have shown that P2P is responsible for over 60 percent of internet upstream traffic, while also accounting for half of North American bandwidth. In some cases, using P2P software is forbidden, such as AT&T Wireless, who said its "terms of service for mobile wireless broadband customers prohibit all uses that may cause extreme network capacity issues, and explicity identify P2P file sharing applications as such a use."
Image Credit: Flickr blogpocket