Rock stars including Robbie Williams, Annie Lennox, and Pink Floyd's Nick Mason have hit back at allegations they condone the illegal downloading of music.
British singer Lily Allen sparked a furious debate in the U.K. over illicit online trading of albums when she accused the Featured Artists Coalition (FAC) of failing to act to stop the practice.
The Smile hitmaker insists fans who download music for free will destroy the industry, and urged FAC members to join her crusade.
She spoke out after Radiohead guitarist Ed O'Brien - a member of FAC - criticised the British government's proposal to launch a crackdown on internet service providers who refuse to ban illegal downloaders.
Now the organisation has hit back as several other stars - including Take That's Gary Barlow, singer James Blunt, and Spandau Ballet's Gary Kemp - join forces with Allen.
A statement on behalf of FAC members reads, "Statements made... by members of the Featured Artists Coalition have been taken to imply that we condone illicit file-sharing. This is not the case and never has been.
"We wish to make it clear to all parties that we believe the creative work of artists should be paid for by those who enjoy it and that whenever our music is used, royalties should be paid.
"The focus of our objection (to the government's proposal) is the proposed treatment of ordinary music fans who download a few tracks so as to check out our material before they buy. For those of us who don't get played on the radio or mentioned in the music media - artists established and emerging - peer-to-peer recommendation is an important form of promotion."