Digital Music News (DMN) reports on a sting operation conducted by The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), which represents the big music industry labels like Sony Music, Universal, and Warner. According to RIAA’s findings, 16 percent of the CD’s sold on eBay are counterfeit, as are 11% of those sold directly by Amazon, while a whopping 25% of the CD’s that go under the category ‘Fulfilled by Amazon’ could originate from somebody’s garage CD burner.
As Amazon itself explains: “With Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA), you store your products in Amazon’s fulfillment centers, and we pick, pack, ship, and provide customer service for these products, FBA can help you scale your business and reach more customers.”
While finding counterfeit goods on eBay may not be such a surprise, these numbers add to the possibility that more than 1 out of 10 CD’s shipped by amazon itself are fake. Some might think – who cares? But, as DMN points out, even with all the streaming and LP resurgence, CD sales are still significant. In 2017, for instance, CD sales accounted for $1.5 billion in revenue.
For its part, Amazon quickly came with a statement of its own, without specifically addressing the numbers RIAA presented. The company says that “Amazon strictly prohibits the sale of counterfeit products and we invest heavily in both funds and company energy to ensure our policy is followed.” Also, it adds that, “in order to detect bad actors and potentially counterfeit products, we make significant investments in machine learning and automated systems,” and that “over 99% of all Amazon page views by our customers landed on pages that did not receive a notice of potential counterfeit infringement.”