“The music industry has been completely crushed by piracy.”

You read a news article about how much money record companies are losing because people steal music on the Internet. In the comments, some people are saying things against the record companies. You don't agree, so you write this in the comments.

The music industry has been completely crushed by piracy.

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the (something) industry

An "industry" is the complete collection of businesses that do something similar to each other. When you're talking about all these businesses (and the people who work in them) together, you use the phrase "the ___ industry". Some examples of industries that everyone has heard of include:

the tobacco industry

the auto industry

the oil industry

the entertainment industry

the phrarmaceutical industry (Selling medicines and (legal) drugs.)

the restaurant industry

There are also lots of other industries. Some of them are only known to a few people who work in that industry. For example, "the crafting industry" includes businesses who make supplies for customers who want to do crafts at home like knitting, jewelry making, and so on.

(something) has been crushed by (something)

When something "has been crushed", it means that it has been damaged or hurt quite a bit.

The word "crush" literally means to squeeze or press something until it breaks into little pieces. For example, "crushed ice" is ice that's been crushed into little pieces.

But "crushed" is also used to talk about an industry, an army, or even someone's dreams. In these cases, it means "destroyed" or "badly damaged":

The American auto industry has been crushed by competition from overseas.

The British forces were nearly crushed, but they managed to hold on until reinforcements arrived.

I don't mean to crush your dreams, but it's extremely hard to get into the film industry. You might want to think of something more practical.


The word "piracy" comes from "pirates", who were people who sailed on ships and stole things from other people's ships. Think of Johnny Depp in the movie Pirates of the Carribbean.

These days, people who steal digital goods like music, movies, and software are also called "pirates". And the noun that identifies this action is "piracy". The word "piracy" has a slightly negative sound, since it means "stealing". But it doesn't sounds as bad as other words like "theft":

The music industry has been completely crushed by theft.

"Theft" sounds much worse. It's also used to talk about stealing physical things instead of digital things. So if someone read this sentence, they might become confused and think that the music industry was having a problem with people stealing CD's from stores.