Music, TV, Film Piracy On The Rise?

Posted on May 29th, 2013 by in Music Industry News

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The UK media regulator Ofcom recently released a report, detailing that internet users are still established pirates in the world of digital media.

As the Guardian reported this week, the ‘online copyright infringement tracker report’ states that around 18% of internet users surveyed admitted to illegally streaming or downloading digital media at least once in the three month period ending 31st January 2013. This is an increase compared to the previous quarter (16%), although perhaps due to the Christmas break and people’s general consumption of media rising in the same period.

Music pirates are the most prolific criminals, with around 280 million of the 386 million items of illegally-accessed content being music files. This is followed by 52 million TV programmes, 29 million movies, 18 million ebooks and 7 million video games. The most common reason given for accessing illegal content is that the method is “free, convenient and quick”.

When you narrow the survey figures to exclude those who do not use the internet to access music, TV, and films at all, piracy levels are around 30% among regular digital media consumers. Similarly, focusing on those who do watch films online, 33% have done so illegally. Among those who stream or download music, 26% admitted to at least one illegal practice.

Perhaps a more poignant fact from the Ofcom report is that of the 18% of internet users who confessed to pirating digital material, only 5% of those did so by using an illegal service. It seems that most ‘pirates’ are getting their fix from regular websites, or perhaps still copying data and media onto physical drives and discs. Something for those who patrol the web to think about when gunning for the next Megaupload…?

by Lee Jarvis.
Follow Lee on Twitter @leejarvis and get music jobs updates from @ukmusicjobs

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