Digital piracy is the unauthorized reproduction and distribution of electronic and audio-visual media. The advent of digital media and analog/digital conversion technologies, especially those that are usable on mass-market general-purpose personal computers, has vastly increased the concerns of copyright-dependent individuals and organizations, especially within the music and movie industries. While analog media inevitably loses quality with each copy generation, and in some cases even during normal use, digital media files may be duplicated an unlimited number of times with no degradation in the quality of subsequent copies.
The advent of personal computers as household appliances has made it convenient for consumers to convert media originally in a physical/analog form or a broadcast form into a universal, digital form (in a process called ripping) for location- or timeshifting. This, combined with the Internet and popular file sharing tools, has facilitated unauthorized distribution of copies of copyrighted digital media.