Once Again, Using Industry's Own Methodology Shows That Copyright Exceptions Contribute More To The Economy Than Copyright

from the using-their-methodology dept

The Copyright Industry absolutely loves to trot out its "numbers" about how much copyright contributes to the economy in terms of both dollars and jobs. The problem, as we've discussed, is that these studies have a counting problem. They simply list out every industry for which you can get copyright, then sum up all the revenue... and pretend that all of that revenue is because of copyright. This is, frankly, ridiculous and stupid. And yet, because Congress and reporters don't bother researching this, they take the numbers at face value. What pisses me off about things like this is that it automatically counts my own revenue as being in support of copyright laws today, when I'm obviously anything but that. Even worse, the industry uses this argument to claim that they need more and stricter copyright laws, as if there's any causal relationship between that and the revenue in those industries.

For a few years now, CCIA has countered these claims from the copyright industry with its own study, using the exact same methodology, but counting up how much "exceptions to copyright" contribute to the economy, and showing that it's actually much larger than copyright. It's not hard to figure out that they're doing this to point out just how ridiculous the numbers from the copyright industry are. What's really funny is when totally clueless copyright maximalists, such as the folks at The Copyright Alliance, attack the methodology of the CCIA fair use/exceptions report, not realizing that they're attacking their own methodology at the same time. Amazingly, after having been called out on this, the Copyright Alliance still tosses out its own version of the study with the methodology that its own "founder" debunked when it was in a different report. In fact, despite the fact that we totally mocked the Copyright Alliance for this last year... this year they're right back at it mocking the CCIA's methodology. And, it looks like the MPAA has joined them in whining about the methodology. Apparently both groups are so clueless they don't even realize they're mocking their own methodology.

To drive this point home, the MPAA complains that the CCIA's report includes the movie industry as part of its "fair use industries." Indeed. But the studies that MPAA uses includes the exact same methodology, and includes companies like my own as a "copyright industry." The whole point -- which the MPAA and Copyright Alliance are apparently too clueless to recognize -- is that both methodologies are totally bogus and significantly overcount, but why is it that the MPAA gets to continue using its totally bogus study results, while slamming CCIA for using the identical methodology? It would be funny, if politicians didn't repeatedly fall for this crap.

Thankfully, not all of them do. When CCIA released its latest version of this copyright exceptions report showing, yet again, just how much exceptions to copyright law contribute to the economy and jobs using the exact same methodology as the famed "copyright" report. And, once again, if we use this methodology, copyright exceptions contribute more to the economy. The numbers are also growing really rapidly. So, based on the Copyright Industry's own logic... shouldn't we be adding more exceptions to copyright law?

The other good news is that Rep. Jared Polis showed up at the event where CCIA released the report and noted how it was important, and spoke out against PROTECT IP. We keep hearing from supporters of the law that only Rep. Lofgren and Senator Wyden are worried about PROTECT IP, but we're learning that a growing number of our elected representatives are, indeed, concerned about the law.

Honestly, I think that any time the Copyright Industry tosses out its numbers, it should be required that people point out CCIA's numbers as well. If you see anyone repeating the Copyright Industry's claims about how much copyright "contributes to the economy," demand that the same politicians and reporters also use CCIA's exceptions to copyright numbers which, again, result from the identical methodology.

Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 19th, 2011 @ 9:22am

    You don't get it, do you?

    It's not who contributes more to the economy, it's who contributes more to the Politicians pockets.

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

  2. icon
    Trails (profile), Jul 19th, 2011 @ 9:30am

    Let me fix that for you.

    Apparently both groups are so cluefull they realize that a thin veneer of plausibility is all they need to give to the elected officials they own in order to pass laws they want and aren't concerned with things like facts or methodology except as a means to an end.

    That's better.

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

  3. identicon
    Alatar, Jul 19th, 2011 @ 9:36am

    Open democratic debate

    How kind of them, look at the notice in the bottom :

    This entry was posted on Tuesday, July 12th, 2011 at 7:45 pm by Sandra Aistars and is filed under digital theft, economy, fair use, jobs. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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

  4. identicon
    bean.java, Jul 19th, 2011 @ 9:43am


    A while back when the EFF was sending out requests to contact our politicians(one day i will spell that right without spellcheck) about S978 i did do so. However at the end of their example message to the politicians i added something like this.

    P.S. If this bill passes it could indeed make your own campaign harder
    due to the fact that someone could own a copyright on something in your
    campaign video. As is the case with most copyright take downs the
    person/entity ordered to take down their content don&apst even know that
    they are violating someone else&apss copyright. Copyrights are a very
    slippery slope to go into and work with.

    While this comment may not be perfectly on topic with this story I believe that it is a copyright situation that the politicians might understand. After all with copyright getting stricter, and even more stricker, the politicians themselves may start having problems. I think the example i used was something like this.

    Imagine for a moment that S978 passed. Come campaign season you would create a video to use for your campaign featuring you in whatever environment, wearing whatever you want, having whatever music you want in the background. Now hear comes the problem, You know that handmade/custom suit you are wearing? Well the person who made it didn't actually give you Notarized Written Permission to use it in the video. You just said something they DO NOT agree with. Under PROTECT IP/S978/Stronger copyright they could possibly issue you a Copyright takedown notice. That's no problem right? WRONG!!, PROTECT IP/S978/Stronger Copyright could find your Campaign site is linking to a Copyright infringing video. How is going to vote for a felon? Oh, you didn't get charged with that felony? Who is going to vote for someone who employes someone who is a felon?? Well not just anykind of felon, The kind of felon who you and your fellow Politicians compare to Child Pornographers?

    How does your comparing everything to child pornography feel now?

    How does "think of the children" feel now?

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

  5. identicon
    Nicedoggy, Jul 19th, 2011 @ 9:46am

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

  6. icon
    Paul (profile), Jul 19th, 2011 @ 10:12am

    If Copyright DOES contribute so much...

    ... Then maybe we need to raise the fees paid by Content companies? After all, they are rolling in the dough from all their contributions, right?

    If they are not, then why are we investing in their interests, I mean from an economic point of view? Shouldn't we instead focus on investing in things that do pay for themselves?

    PROTECT IP and other expansions of IP policing cost money, time and effort. If there isn't a return on this, why are we doing it?

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

  7. identicon
    NAMELESS.ONE, Jul 19th, 2011 @ 10:19am


    like i said before just keep doing yourselves in, slowly as the rest of the world realizes your model of life and business dont work...we'll move on , your veiled life will get worse and worse.

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

  8. identicon
    Nicedoggy, Jul 19th, 2011 @ 10:26am

    Re: EFF

    Politico: Screw the children, no children pirate anything, those are hardcore criminals that deserve to go to jail.

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

  9. identicon
    out_of_the_blue, Jul 19th, 2011 @ 10:42am

    Contrary to the myth, most of "capitalism" tries to shrink markets.

    It's preferred to control all of a smaller market than a piece of a larger. -- Catchphrase: "big frog in small pond", and maybe "better to reign in hell than serve in heaven" too.

    So yet again, your surprise is due only to not understanding the system you're in. Discard the premise that freedom and capitalism are inseparable and necessary for each other.

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

  10. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 19th, 2011 @ 10:52am

    I actually had a similar case not too long ago. Court refused to issue an injunction because it was not clear that the defendant was really going to do the thing to be enjoined anyway.

    Courts don't like giving speculative or just-in-case orders.

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

  11. icon
    The eejit (profile), Jul 19th, 2011 @ 11:25am

    Re: Contrary to the myth, most of "capitalism" tries to shrink markets.

    ah, but is it better to reign in Dis or Transylvania? How about Earth?

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

  12. icon
    Jay (profile), Jul 19th, 2011 @ 11:33am

    Re: Re: EFF

    How Whitney Harper dodged that bullet, I have no idea.

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

  13. icon
    btrussell (profile), Jul 19th, 2011 @ 1:22pm

    Re: Contrary to the myth, most of "capitalism" tries to shrink markets.

    "It's preferred to control all of a smaller market than a piece of a larger. -- "

    So that is why they wish to alienate all of their customers, desire for a smaller market.

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

  14. identicon
    guest, Jul 19th, 2011 @ 1:53pm

    Methodology on the Economic Contribution of Copyright-based industries

    Here are country studies based on the WIPO Guide on Surveying the Economic Contribution of the Copyright-Based Industries. Some make for good reading.


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

  15. icon
    Pjerky (profile), Jul 19th, 2011 @ 4:53pm

    It would be hilarious if...

    It would be hilarious if someone were to run the numbers on how much money these copyright maximalists are costing the government each year and how much money they are taking away from charitable causes by strong arming companies that normally donate a lot of money but had to redirect that money to our copyright overlords.

    The heading could be something like "Copyright is costing the U.S. government billions per year and hurting sick babies." That would be an awesome headline.

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

  16. identicon
    Lawrence D'Oliveiro, Jul 19th, 2011 @ 6:36pm

    Re: Contrary to the myth, most of "capitalism" tries to shrink markets.

    Wonder why World GDP has been growing throughout human history, then. And more than that, per-capita GDP has been growing since about 1800 (i.e. the birth of the Industrial Revolution).

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

  17. icon
    The eejit (profile), Jul 19th, 2011 @ 11:30pm

    Re: It would be hilarious if...

    I'll get right on it.

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

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