Effect of peer influence on unauthorized music downloading and sharing

Journal of Business Research

Yang, Wang, & Mourali


March 1, 2015


This research develops an integrative model of music piracy, specifying self-control and differential association as antecedents, peer influence in music downloading/sharing as mediator, and self-construal as moderator. Disentangling peer influence into two forms—informational influence and normative influence—this research examines their differential effects on two aspects of music piracy: unauthorized downloading and unauthorized sharing. The findings suggest that informational influence is the key underlying mechanism through which self-control affects unauthorized downloading, whereas the two forms of peer influence mediate the relationship between differential association and both aspects of music piracy. Furthermore, the relationships among antecedents, mediator, and consequences (i.e., unauthorized downloading and unauthorized sharing) are contingent upon individuals’ self-construal. These findings yield important implications and intervention programs (e.g., interpersonal skill training, educational extension programs, and artist-student contact points) that can curb music piracy.