Is The Entertainment Industry Doing Itself Any Favors With Ridiculous Loss Claims?

from the doubtful dept

The entertainment industry is famous for its bogus stats, claiming massive losses from things like file sharing. However, when those reports are looked at by any credible source, it's not hard to realize they're totally bogus. This also comes up in various lawsuits. For example, a Russian torrent tracker was shut down, and the operators of the site are now being accused of causing $1.25 billion (with a b) in losses for the movie industry. This is substantiated by... well... absolutely nothing other than movie studios insisting that it's true. I'm curious as to why they do this, because when they put forth such unbelievable numbers, it seems like they're only hurting themselves. No one believes that such numbers are even close to true and it just makes it that much more difficult to take them seriously. Then again, maybe they're just using some Hollywood accounting to figure out those losses...


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 14th, 2010 @ 7:51pm

    It's those theatrical accounting practices from the MPAA.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 14th, 2010 @ 8:02pm

    just imagine the inflation if all their theoretical money actually existed, gotta be in the trillions by now

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 14th, 2010 @ 8:26pm

    More like quadrillions. Don't you know the interest rate you get when you are Hollywood?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4.  
    icon
    Hephaestus (profile), Jul 14th, 2010 @ 8:35pm

    I give them an A for effort but a B (ie Bull Sh!t "with a b") for their accounting and numbers. :)

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5.  
    icon
    fogbugzd (profile), Jul 14th, 2010 @ 8:51pm

    The scary thing is that some of the execs actually believe the numbers.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  6.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 14th, 2010 @ 9:25pm

    More like quadrillions. Don't you know the interest rate you get when you are Hollywood?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 14th, 2010 @ 9:42pm

    I'm wondering which government will be the first to use the same BS to tax them, that would be priceless.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  8.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 14th, 2010 @ 9:43pm

    Governments everywhere should look very closely to how they are calculating those losses and start using that to calculate taxes :)

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  9.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 14th, 2010 @ 10:07pm

    are the "free is good" people doing themselves any good claiming piracy does no bad, and causes no losses?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  10.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 14th, 2010 @ 10:35pm

    Re:

    Copyright infringement does no bad, and causes no losses?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  11.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 14th, 2010 @ 10:46pm

    Re:

    A competing ice cream shop moving next to yours may cause losses to your shop but that doesn't mean competition is wrong.

    No one owes you a monopoly on anything and so copyright infringement isn't morally wrong apart from the law.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  12.  
    icon
    PaulT (profile), Jul 15th, 2010 @ 12:00am

    Re:

    "piracy does no bad, and causes no losses"

    Point out an article where Mike and/or regular commenters you regularly attack have actually said this, please. Otherwise, that strawman you keep attacking just keeps looking shabbier.

    Piracy does cause losses, it just cannot be combated with lawsuits and doesn't cause anywhere near the losses the industry claims.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  13.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 15th, 2010 @ 12:17am

    Re: Re:

    and in some instances it can actually be used to help sales if used correctly. Sometimes the effects are neutral. Sometimes the effects are bad (though not as bad as the RIAA et al make them out to be of course). Saying that sometimes they don't cause loss isn't the same as saying that they never cause loss. The point here is that since no one owes anyone a monopoly on anything any "loss" isn't a wrongful loss. It's no more a wrongful loss as is a competing ice cream shop moving next door to yours and competing. Competition may cause loss but it's not a wrongful loss.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  14.  
    icon
    PaulT (profile), Jul 15th, 2010 @ 12:59am

    Re: Re: Re:

    Yes, indeed. That's why the figures are so unrealistic - not only do they assume that every "pirate" would buy media at full retail price, they don't take into account positive effects of "piracy" either.

    I'm sure there's still a net loss, but nothing that couldn't be recouped through clever business tactics instead of lawsuits.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  15.  
    identicon
    Michael, Jul 15th, 2010 @ 5:08am

    Re: Re: Re:

    It is a little different than another ice cream shop opening next door. It's like a machine that can copy ice cream is invented and someone sits outside your shop copying your ice cream and giving it away.

    Now, that may suck for you as an ice cream shop owner, but you cannot reasonably claim that everyone that takes the free ice cream would have bought yours. Especially once word of mouth spreads, lots of people that would normally not have bought ice cream would be showing up.

    Will you lose ice cream profits? Yup. Did the price of your ice cream just drop to zero? Yes again. Is it valueless? Of course not. Can you come up with creative ways to utilize the popularity of your (now free) ice cream? I hope so, because if you do not, someone smarter will and you will be working at Wendy's lamenting the days when you didn't have to wear the stupid hat.

    That's free enterprise. It seems completely unfair when you cannot figure out how to benefit from it.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  16.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 15th, 2010 @ 5:44am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    its like an ice cream store opening next to your ice cream store, but instead of inventory, they just come over and just dip into your tubs when they need some stock. no big deal, they never take the full tub, and you have plenty so a little sharing never hurts.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  17.  
    identicon
    PRMan, Jul 15th, 2010 @ 5:48am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Wrong. It's exactly like the first example. The entertainment industry never lost a molecule of physical product.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  18.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 15th, 2010 @ 6:41am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Oh, you're back to making yourself look like a moron by comparing infringement to theft.

    Good one, TAM.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  19.  
    identicon
    ChasW, Jul 15th, 2010 @ 8:14am

    Does this mean that if they shut down the site, they should be up $1.25 billion next year?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  20.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 15th, 2010 @ 4:25pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Or any ice cream, for that matter.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here
Get Techdirt’s Daily Email
Save me a cookie
  • Note: A CRLF will be replaced by a break tag (<br>), all other allowable HTML will remain intact
  • Allowed HTML Tags: <b> <i> <a> <em> <br> <strong> <blockquote> <hr> <tt>
Follow Techdirt
A word from our sponsors...
Essential Reading
Techdirt Reading List
Techdirt Insider Chat
A word from our sponsors...
Recent Stories
A word from our sponsors...

Close

Email This