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Now It's The UK's Turn For Some Bogus Piracy Stats

from the fun-with-numbers dept

There are plenty of instances of misleading and otherwise bad stats being used by anti-piracy groups, like the recent BSA numbers from Canada that were basically made up. Now, a group from the UK is saying that piracy costs that country's economy tens of billions of pounds. It makes the same mistake as plenty of other studies before it: counting every instance of piracy, or perhaps even just the availability of copyrighted material on file-sharing networks, as a lost sale. It's fallacious to assume that every single person that downloads a piece of content, or simply has access to it for free, would pay for it if the free version wasn't available. Furthermore, any study like this that says an entire economy is being harmed by X amount of money because of piracy is pretty much bogus. This money that's supposedly being lost because of piracy isn't being lost by the economy, as undoubtedly it's being spent elsewhere. It's not being flushed down the toilet or turned into ether, it's just not ending up in content companies' bank accounts.

Filed Under: piracy, stats, uk


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  1. identicon
    sonicmerlin, 1 Jun 2009 @ 10:54pm

    Re:

    Yes but online online music sales have BLOWN UP. The extreme popularity of iTunes and similar online stores has occurred in the last few years, basically since 2005. CD sales have declined, but legal music downloads more than compensated for them.

    Your dig at the studies in Canada are essentially meaningless. Human behavior with regards to internet usage is quite similar across western cultures.

    I agree that techdirt leaves out some information that prevents people but seeing the whole picture, but then even including all that extra information wouldn't make them less right. Just less effective in communicating their point.

    The RIAA, BSA, etc. on the other hand leave out *all* the information, and provide false data over and over again. Techdirt then is the (much) lesser of 2 evils.

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