End User internet media piracy Regs

Music Industry piling on the punches in final round of DEB big fight #digitalbritain

In the press today is a report that says “The growth of illegal file-sharing could cost European countries 1.2m jobs and 240bn euros (£215bn) by 2015”.

“the UK’s creative industries experienced losses of 1.4bn euros in 2008 because of piracy.”

Really, so where did that 1.4bn go? It certainly didn’t go into bank accounts (otherwise the ratios would be really healthy), it hasn’t been spent in the shops (or they wouldn’t be suffering) and its not been invested in anything (because that amount of investment would have been noticed?).

The basic maths works something like this:

1. Somebody downloads something ‘illegally’ – more accurately without paying the appropriate copyright holder[s] ‘the correct’ amount of money

2. Assume this is a direct lost sales because if they hadn’t done it illegally the would have paid for it

3. Lets work out how many downloads there were (using end user self surveys that tend to ‘glamorize’ the act by calling it piracy) last year

4. Multiply lost opportunity cost by number of exaggerated download claims

5. Final figure is a research generated total that we can use in a press release prefixed by the immortal words “a recent study has shown that the cost to the creative industries was….”

If there was the technical means to block ALL forms of copyright infringement online the creative industries would NOT see £1.4bn suddenly flowing into their coffers – I doubt that there is that much spare change rattling around in the economy.

The creative industries need to wake up and change their business models to provide end users with what they want.

Classic example: ‘Pacific’ (the follow-up to ‘Band of Brothers’) is airing in the States at the minute. It starts in the UK on April 1st (and only on Sky Movies channel) so anyone who wants to get the content today (even if they are happy to pay) can only get it from a torrent site after its US screening. I know of a few people who are doing this even though the fully intend to buy the DVDs later when they are released. It’s the sort of thing they are into and their motivation is not one of theft but of availability.

If someone could provide the content in a streamed on-demand way only 1-2 days after the US then large numbers of people would be happy to pay, although since the rights are owned by Sky for the UK I assume that negotiating this would be near impossible.

You can download the report by Consultancy TERA  here -> TERA_Report 

Clearly as we approach the week in which the last 70% of the work on the Digital Economy Bill is rushed through the publicity machines are reaching a frenetical pitch.

Thanks go to “boggits” for the input to this post.

PS don’t understand this Hollywood movie thing. I spend all my spare time writing blog posts! 🙂

Trefor Davies

By Trefor Davies

Liver of life, father of four, CTO of, writer, poet,

One reply on “Music Industry piling on the punches in final round of DEB big fight #digitalbritain”

I don’t understand it either, I prefer peace and quiet to music… sorry. What I do understand is that most artists don’t get much money, or publicity. The few ‘meeja made’ stars get too much, and the publicity machine gets the lion’s share. It is a bloated obsolete industry which milks and destroys talent. There Another good post, would just like to say there will always be music, they can’t kill the music, but government in defending the flawed business model can kill our internet, invade our privacy and persecute innocent people. They can never stop pirates, they have been told this repeatedly by the experts. The media needs to come up with a new model, and stop hiding behind the skirts (no pun intended) of the Dark Lord and his cohorts. My generation have been ripped off, my kids have been ripped off, generations of saturday job wages and pocket money have poured into the coffers of the music industry. The kids are now getting the chance to listen and try out massive amounts of music through spotify and other such legal sites, they share their own music, give publicity to music that would never be heard otherwise, they make and put music online, they don’t need the old fashioned music industry at all, and it must really bug them.. I support anyone fighting to kill the flawed debill for the sake of my grandchildren, and to stop digitalbritain becoming a laughing stock. The bill is flawed in many other ways and can’t be saved. We need a proper one writing by a group that lives in this century rather than the last… and not including anyone off the old boys network.
If downloading and paying for timely, quality, legal content in an easy manner was possible they would all do it, rather than risk the viruses on some pirate sites. It isn’t currently easy to be legal, as anyone who has experienced them will tell you. It is far easier to leave a torrent running overnight. So that is what they do. Simple. In doing so they are seeding, and that is breaking the law. Remove the need for them to break it, and they won’t. It is far easier to do that than it is to catch em all, they are far too smart for that. Only the innocent mistakes will get caught and folk who leave their connections open.

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