Until streaming came along, bootleg CDs were a major problem for the music industry. Most were produced in countries where there was little oversight when it came to copyright protection and intellectual property.
Making bootlegs was a crime in itself and ripped off musicians and labels, but there’s evidence that the profits derived from the sale of these illegal recordings went to some shady places.
According to a 1994 British newspaper report, the Irish Republican Army got a lot of its funding through the sales of bootleg CDs. Investigators believe that the IRA raised over £10 million for guns and bombs and whatever else by flooding the British market with illegal CDs and vinyl.
Last week ended with some fun with CD-ROMs.