Radiohead's Ed O'Brien: 'I agree with Lily Allen on file-sharing'

However guitarist is still not in favour of 'cutting people's internet off'

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Photo: Dean Chalkley

Radiohead's Ed O'Brien has responded to Lily Allen's criticism of him with regards to file-sharing, saying that he agrees with her.

Allen had accused the guitarist, a member of the Featured Artists Coalition, of portraying the message that illegal file-sharing was acceptable.

He has since told the BBC World Service that he does in fact agree with the singer's stance, and that he was not trying to send such a message.

"What's great at the moment is that artists, people like Lily Allen are saying, 'You know what, there are consequences to file-sharing', and that's the first step in engaging the file-sharers," he said.

Allen had suggested that O'Brien and other already successful musicians had a lax attitude to file-sharing as it wouldn't affect them as much financially as it would smaller bands.

"I completely agree with Lily Allen," O'Brien said. "We're [Radiohead] certainly not going to suffer. A lot of people have downloaded our music for free, but ultimately we don't suffer as much as a small band."

He went on to say that young music lovers should be encouraged to stop file-sharing through education and providing cheaper legal downloads. He criticised the Government's proposal to cut of internet connections of those who persistently file-share.

"At the moment the industry is saying you get them to change their behaviour by threatening them," he said. "We don't think this is realistic. Hopefully we can educate them [music fans] and say, 'Listen, if you want a great vibrant music scene and your favourite bands to be able to carry on doing it, you have a responsibility to pay for some of the work that they've produced'.

"Record companies have to license out the recordings a lot more. You want to make it completely user-friendly for somebody to be able to download something. Make it cheaper as well. Basically have more websites out there selling people's work."

Lily Allen recently set up a blog to record responses for her campaign to challenge illegal downloading.

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