Industry Suppressed Report Showing Users Of Shuttered 'Pirate' Site Probably Helped Movie Industry...

from the well,-look-at-that dept

We've seen study after study after study after study after study showing, contrary to the claim of the industry and certain politicians that users of file sharing sites are pure "freeloaders" who are "leeching," that the users tend to be larger spenders on media and ancillary products. So it's really not a huge surprise that a new study would come out saying the same thing...

But, in this case, the history of the report, which has not actually been released, is a lot more interesting. As you may recall, in June, law enforcement across Europe arrested a bunch of people for apparently running -- a site that had been listed by US entertainment lobbyists as one of the worst of the worst "pirate sites," out there. So, it sure would be interesting to find out that, before all of this happened, some entertainment industry lobbyists had commissioned research into the type of folks who used and their media consumption habits.

Indeed, as TorrentFreak found out, it appears that just such a report was commissioned and created... and the results matched all those other studies we've seen:
The study, which was carried out by Society for Consumer Research (GfK), found that users of pirate sites including did not fit the copyright lobby-painted stereotype of parasites who take and never give back.

In fact, the study also found that Internet users treat these services as a preview, a kind of “try before you buy.”

This, the survey claims, leads pirate site users to buy more DVDs, visit the cinema more often and on average spend more than their ‘honest’ counterparts at the box office.

“The users often buy a ticket to the expensive weekend-days,” the report notes.
Of course, this report never saw the light of day. The only reason it appears to be getting out is what appears to be disgruntled researchers on the report who are upset it was spiked by whoever commissioned it... though the firm does have a history of working with organizations within the movie industry.

Of course, all of this raises some questions. Considering all of this research -- including some that appears to have been sponsored by the industry itself... why does the industry continue to lie and insist that people who use these sites are pure freeloaders? Do they not believe their own studies? Or do they simply fear the loss of control such a reality would really mean? Either way, it seems that those politicians, law enforcement officials and press who continue to parrot the industry's claims about those who use these services might want to reconsider how they portray these sites.

Filed Under: europe, file sharing, movies, piracy, studies

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  1. identicon
    That Anonymous Coward, 21 Jul 2011 @ 7:57pm

    To accept for the briefest moment that the study was in any way shape or form accurate, would call into question years of the way the **AA's do things.

    It is human nature to continue to do things the say way and expect that they will change to suit your ideal rather than continue how they actually are.

    The Government gives out silly amounts of money to help out the less fortunate nations, handing all sorts of things to a corrupt government who then *gasp* acts all corrupt and enriches themselves rather than help the people. And then we give them more help. and more... and we get the same result over and over.

    Aid agencies have their "best methods" for assisting in disasters, and they follow their plan and ignore the real issues people are facing or how a local taboo might keep people from coming forward for help. But the plan says! And they do not adapt.

    The **AA's are devoted to the idea that there are kajillions of dollars being lost and that they must be fully reclaimed. They win lawsuits and only after being publicly shamed to they give anything to the artists they claim to represent and are fighting the good fight for. You find the officials of these groups being well paid and compensated for failing to meet their mission goal. They harm the interests of those they represent, waste the resources they are given on silly campaigns, and demand that the world just stop and start paying them.

    We waste time, effort, and energy trying to find that new magic bullet law that will not screw over everyone but will take them back to the heady days of everyone having to buy CD's. It does not matter the consumer hates the other 10 tracks on the 12 track CD, they need to buy it all... and buy multiples so they do not deprive the "artists" their fair share if they listen to it in the car or in their office. Each place needs its own copy!

    How different the world might have been had any of them said, well suing them isn't going anywhere good. How do we get ahead of this and meet consumer demand.

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