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The Internet Piracy Conspiracy - Piracy don't hurt sales says European Commission and others

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posted on Apr, 10 2013 @ 06:47 AM
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You always hear people say Internet Piracy hurts sales. Don't you wish someone would do a large study to find out if this is true or not? Now someone has and the results say Piracy does Not hurt sales.


A new study by The Institute for Prospective Technological Studies, which is part of the European Commission’s Joint Research Centre, tackled this question in a unique way. With data from more than 16,000 European Internet users they determined what the effect was of people’s access to pirate sites on visits to online music stores.

The results are now published in a paper titled “Digital Music Consumption on the Internet: Evidence from Clickstream Data,” and the researchers found that overall, piracy has a positive effect on music sales.

“It seems that the majority of the music that is consumed illegally by the individuals in our sample would not have been purchased if illegal downloading websites were not available to them,” they write.

In addition, the researchers are also the first to find that free and legal streaming websites don’t cannibalize legal music purchases.

torrentfreak.com... Alternate link: www.wired.co.uk...

You might say, Oh that's just the EU, the findings won't be the same in the USA - Guess again. Not only do they find Piracy doesn't hurt sales, but they find file sharers actually BUY 30% more music than non file sharers. From another study:


A new academic paper by a researcher from the North Carolina State University has examined the link between BitTorrent downloads and music album sales. Contrary to what’s often claimed by the major record labels, the paper concludes that there is absolutely no evidence that unauthorized downloads negatively impact sales. Instead, the research finds that more piracy directly leads to more album sales.

Between May 2010 and January 2011 the professor collected a variety of download statistics of new albums that were released on the largest private BitTorrent tracker dedicated to music. He then used this data in combination with sales numbers to construct a model that predicts what the causal effect of piracy on music sales is.

The results are unique in its kind and reveal that BitTorrent piracy causes an increase in album sales.

“I isolate the causal effect of file sharing of an album on its sales by exploiting exogenous variation in how widely available the album was prior to its official release date. The findings suggest that file sharing of an album benefits its sales. I don’t find any evidence of a negative effect in any specification, using any instrument,” Hammond concludes in his paper.
torrentfreak.com... Alternate link: www.gizmodo.co.uk...

And yet another article. This study looks at P2P users in the U.S and Germany:


US P2P users have larger collections than non-P2P users (roughly 37% more). And predictably, most of the difference comes from higher levels of ‘downloading for free’ and ‘copying from friends/family’,” American Assembly’s Joe Karaganis writes.

But some of it also comes from significantly higher legal purchases of digital music than their non-P2P using peers–around 30% higher among US P2P users. Our data is quite clear on this point and lines up with numerous other studies: The biggest music pirates are also the biggest spenders on recorded music.
torrentfreak.com... Alternate link: www.huffingtonpost.com...

Did you know, file sharing of "copyrighted" material is Legal in some places?


Downloading copied music is legal in some countries in the context of the copyright, such as Canada,[22] The Netherlands,[23] Spain,[24] and Panama,[citation needed] provided that the songs are not sold. In Canada it is legal to download any copyrighted file as long as it is for noncommercial use, but it is illegal to distribute the copyrighted files (e.g. by uploading them to a P2P network.
en.wikipedia.org...

So.. if we have all this data coming out saying the RIAA is full of Crap, are lying to the public and online piracy doesn't hurt sales and these companies Know this.. why do they fight Pirates so hard?

It's a way to restrict our Freedoms. Not the freedom to share files, but to gain Control over us. Look at History. Any time the lobbyist for the large corporations can get a foothold in the minds of their Government conspirators that the Government needs to step in and Do something on their behalf ( Government catering to private industry over the wants of We The People - fascism) They find a way to restrict our freedoms with threats of guns violence and incarceration.

One day you won't be going to a record store, you'll be going to a government approved music center ( run by the Music Industry and subsidized by your Uncle Sam) and will be allowed ( after a psyche profile) to only purchase music approved for your personality type. Of course you'll use your wrist implanted RFID chip (mark of the beast anyone - thank god we don't have to carry around those Credit cards anymore) to make this transfer and You the sleeping public is gonna thank your god the U.S. Government for this honor. After all, Father Government knows what's best.

You see these large companies I believe see a bigger picture here. They aren't so worried about the billions of songs downloaded they aren't losing sales on, they are worried about how they can continue to expand and control the market in today's changing economic climate. They are planning for their future, not yours and they will take away our freedoms to secure their path.

That's as good a conspiracy theory as any and to me brings this whole matter into the light in a way it makes the most since. What do you think?

edit on 10-4-2013 by JohnPhoenix because: addition




posted on Apr, 10 2013 @ 07:20 AM
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What the Big five want as an end game is to have the power to take our money every time we decide to listen to a song or watch a movie. They do not want us to 'own' anything.

I don't think they will ever achieve this and instead they will burn the whole industry down.

This is already happening in sales of books where the big publishers and bookstores are dying as their antiquated methodologies give way to Authors' direct marketing strategies, otherwise called e-publishing.

P



posted on Apr, 10 2013 @ 08:09 AM
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Considering that HBO has been publicly disseminating or promoting the news store that cited Game of Thrones as being the number 1 pirated TV download to date, and also stating that they would not be actively prosecuting individual downloaders, it seems that they can make money either way.

In fact, to me it seems like a great way to "unofficially" make money for some networks.

Lets say I'm HBO:

I charge subscriptions and subsequently use that money for my overhead costs. I have certain programs that later on will be syndicated to different networks. Think Sopranos.

The shows popularity depends on two things, viewership and buzz.

If I have 1 million illegal views, in the eyes of prospective buyers, that still counts in my viewership, meaning it makes the show more valuable.

Also, people who may not have subscriptions, might consider after watching the pirated versions.

In a sense, it's like "free trials".

In any case, when I got to sell it to syndicated networks, my viewership will net me $$$. Also, when I release the "special edition" box set, I will be trying to get the hard core fans of the pirated crowd to buy it. Simply out of nostalgia, many do.

www.slate.com...

Now here is where I differ from HBO. Personally, I would release an "Official" but completely unofficial version of the show, which of course would not get promoted in any shape or form. This would get released to torrent sites and some advertising would get thrown in with it. Be it a 1 minute commercial at the beginning of the pirated episode, it would be worth a fortune.

Unfortunately, that would be a risky game, because if your subscriber base found out you were releasing the show to the general public via torrents, they might be entirely cheesed.



posted on Apr, 10 2013 @ 08:10 AM
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Used to use limewire as a teen, never bought music as i had no disposable income. 24 now, download the odd album here and there - mainly for people i know, but even if they shut down certain websites that provide the links, i wouldn't go out to buy the music i wanted. Just that simple really.

My ISP has blocked a certain site to stop its users from accessing it (Hello censorship) i just use a proxy to get around it.



posted on Apr, 10 2013 @ 08:24 AM
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History has already shown that the more they crack down on piracy, the more people are going to pirate.


Take the game "Spore" for example, because of it's draconian DRM measures with SecureROM, it ended up being one of the most pirated games of 2008. OOOPS!

Don't forget South Park woudn't be on the air today if it weren't for their short, "The Spirit of Christmas" being pirated.
edit on 10-4-2013 by Junkheap because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 10 2013 @ 08:37 AM
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reply to post by Junkheap
 


As much as the RIAA would have you believe that piracy costs "trillions" of dollars to mom and pop mega corporations. The simple fact is that artists make money of being known, and the only way to be known is to be able to watch/listen to their stuff.

The distribution wars are insane sometimes.

There are so many things I'd like to watch/listen to but I can't find on my main source of distribution which is iTunes. I love iTunes. In fact, I love paying for top quality productions.

Back in the day, before I could afford it, I used Limewire, Napster and the like. Every now and then someone gives me a burned movie or music disc to listen to. The most important fact though, is if I like it, I buy the actual material eventually when it's available.

It's frustrating when you want to buy something but it's on another distribution service, or one that isn't even available to you. In this day and age, when it's possible to just download something or store it in a chip the size of my fingernail, I find it completely stupid that I can't get something when I want to pay money for it.

So yes, performers and production studios will survive with piracy, given that a large portion of the people downloading would just not buy it to begin with if they weren't able to pirate.

And at least this way, you get their word of mouth advertising in the end.

The ones that bitch are the ones that release/produce crap productions for the most part. Or Metallica.



posted on Apr, 10 2013 @ 08:44 AM
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Originally posted by pheonix358
What the Big five want as an end game is to have the power to take our money every time we decide to listen to a song or watch a movie. They do not want us to 'own' anything.

I don't think they will ever achieve this and instead they will burn the whole industry down.

This is already happening in sales of books where the big publishers and bookstores are dying as their antiquated methodologies give way to Authors' direct marketing strategies, otherwise called e-publishing.

P


It's scary the way the future of gaming consoles is going. Wont be able to play games without an internet connection, wont be able to play games that are not connected to their original box that it was first played on, etc.

I am actually happy in the case of the game distributor stores taking a massive hit (and probably going out of business) because of how many bad deals or terrible service they have given me.

At the same time, I really hate the idea of gaming moving so far away from the roots of the cartridge based consoles the industry was based on.

And once again, this is an example of the people who release crap product trying to scrape the little they can out of the community gaming wallet.

If you produce games like COD, you sure as hell aren't worried about not making $$$ of your releases. Or worried that used copies are going to keep you from hitting your profit margin.

It's a simple truth that when mediocre games come out, the first thought that comes to mind is..."I'm not spending $60 for this crap game the first week. I can wait 3 months and grab a used copy after it already hit discount level, spend $20 instead."
edit on 10-4-2013 by boncho because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 10 2013 @ 09:22 AM
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this is a Dual conspiracy, the Government is in bed with the **AA's, look at SOPA/PIPA/CISPA/TPP..

the government can't take your rights away so the private sector sets legal precedents to do so, in turn to get the Government to setup bad laws. (and screams "piracy" we are losing money even thought {for example} Hollywood made record profits last year)

private industry pays millions in "donations" (Bribes) and even writes bills (so they don't have to "police" themselves, but pass the cost on to third parties)

if the elected gets found out about being a shill for said corporation and is voted out, they get a cushy consulting or lobbying job

this is been going on for the last decade in the **AA's case but is part of "Washington" culture overall.


this is just and excuse for legacy industries to legislate monopolies rather than innovate... and squash anyone that does (Megaupload)



posted on Apr, 10 2013 @ 09:44 AM
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Good thread. It is my opinion that you cannot come to one conclusion regarding the benefits/costs of piracy but that one has to judge the pros and cons on a case-by-case basis. For example, the music industry may be thriving, what about the adult entertainment industry? Food for thought.



posted on Apr, 10 2013 @ 10:07 AM
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reply to post by boncho
 


I was just about to mention Game of Thrones. I didn't get a chance to watch the first season when it came out so I DL'ed it. I loved it so much I went and bought the series. In fact, I tend to buy more when I DL something. If I like it I buy it. This goes for movies, TV series and music. I pretty much own a copy of every thing I DL. To me, there's something about having the hard copy I find reassuring.



posted on Apr, 10 2013 @ 10:15 AM
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Originally posted by XLR8R
reply to post by boncho
 


I was just about to mention Game of Thrones. I didn't get a chance to watch the first season when it came out so I DL'ed it. I loved it so much I went and bought the series. In fact, I tend to buy more when I DL something. If I like it I buy it. This goes for movies, TV series and music. I pretty much own a copy of every thing I DL. To me, there's something about having the hard copy I find reassuring.


Same can be said for books versus ebooks. Physical object = sign of ownership. Something in the ether of cyberspace = less secure.



posted on Apr, 10 2013 @ 10:15 AM
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edit on 10-4-2013 by MysteriousHusky because: Mysterious double post at same time.



posted on Apr, 10 2013 @ 10:28 AM
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reply to post by MysteriousHusky
 


Yeah, I don't trust cyberspace much for storage. Plus, all this cloud tech coming out, I find it off putting. As for books, I rather go spend a day at Chapter's or a used book store to find them. The smell of the ink, the weight of the book in your hand. It's something to appreciate.



posted on Apr, 10 2013 @ 10:42 AM
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All good posts so far. (and thanks folks) I especially like Phoenix358's take on motive to charge to listen per song ( that's just as plausible as my take) and thedigirati's tying this in with all the SOPA clone bills. That's what I want out of this thread.. reasons for motive since I have shown it can't be for any imagined money lost.

If we could figure out the Real motive we could fight these things that seek to take away our freedom much more effectively.

Piracy may be a problem for some small artist, musicians, authors, programmers, movie makers etc. These issues do need to be addressed for the people by the people - But we cannot let it be handled in a way that takes away the very freedoms that allow these people to be creative in the first place. I don't think nearly enough serious discussion has been done on this.



posted on Apr, 10 2013 @ 12:20 PM
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reply to post by JohnPhoenix
 
I know several people who download movies and music online and if they really like it they buy it, if not no money lost on something they didn't like. I don't think file sharing is any different from letting a friend or family member borrow a movie or CD that you bought in the store. People that don't buy will borrow from someone else if file sharing isn't available- they're not going to rush right out and buy regardless.



posted on Apr, 10 2013 @ 12:40 PM
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reply to post by littled16
 


Can the same be said regarding adult content? You can anonymously retrieve it online, and while you can order hard copies (no pun intended) securely online as well, piracy of adult content has to some degree impacted purchases negatively.



posted on Apr, 10 2013 @ 12:48 PM
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reply to post by MysteriousHusky
 
I couldn't say as I haven't watched porn in years. In the old days we used to trade VHS and DVDs among our circle of friends.



posted on Apr, 10 2013 @ 12:55 PM
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It really is simple.

You write a book. It gets put into epub format for etailers to sell.
They sell 5000 copies. (considered to be very successful)
A few of those torrent your book.
Another 10,000 people download the book.

Are you out any money? Of course you are. Maybe not the full 10,000 in sales but certainly 5000 sales.
Would you be pissed that you missed out on half your commision ?
Of course you would be pissed.

Don't try to lie to yourselves. It is stealing.



posted on Apr, 10 2013 @ 02:28 PM
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Originally posted by samkent
It really is simple.

You write a book. It gets put into epub format for etailers to sell.
They sell 5000 copies. (considered to be very successful)
A few of those torrent your book.
Another 10,000 people download the book.

Are you out any money? Of course you are. Maybe not the full 10,000 in sales but certainly 5000 sales.
Would you be pissed that you missed out on half your commision ?
Of course you would be pissed.

Don't try to lie to yourselves. It is stealing.


I'm going to draw a picture of a frog made with graph paper and blue crayon.. I sell these for 1 dollar a pop. I have made 20 of them to sell. I'm going to show it to a guy that has a photographic memory. He then draws the frog in exact details. He uses the same graph paper and blue crayon. He gives this copy away to his friend Joe. Did he steal from me? No. Should what he did be illegal? No. If he breaks into my shop and steals 5 copies of my 20, then I miss sales. That's how I see it.

Now there are small companies who could not sell cold water to a guy in hell for the price of a thank you and they have the stuff pirated. Who's fault is this? Everyone needs to share the blame, this company included as well as any marketing company or publisher, movie producer etc. They should not produce any product that is easily copyable to another medium or is in a medium itself that lends itself to being copied. . This goes for movies, music, software, e-books etc. That's the first thing that needs to change if people don't want the stuff copied. We need new containers, new exe, jpg, avi mpeg, epub, txt, wav - what have you that is resistant to copying or that self deletes - or something. Flood the net with these and make computers only able to handle these types of files and in time, Poof, no more piracy. Or how about pirated items that stay alive for 24 hours then default you to the website to purchase the item? They need to change the technology.

The next thing that needs to change is this idea that because the item is in a digital medium and can be copied 100 billion times to the 10th power that they are entitled to something every time the thing is copied - providing they cannot control the copying of the item. You Know it's going to get copied so this is unrealistic. It's impossible. People should base the projected sales of digital items on a realistic number that is reasonable. You already know that in time, your item will become public domain and will be free to all anyway. There needs to be a way to arrive at what is fair market value for that item before either public domain or heavy pirating kicks in. This has not been done. Why do this? Simple. We base product values on things like time it took to create the item, the book cover and pages, the printing materials, or the dvd and dvd cover, label and the cost of the machines that copy them plus some profit.. etc.. these are knowns that can be calculated. If I take 3 months and write a book and have no overhead but a 200 dollar computer I got at a yard sale and I only sell it online in a easily copyable format, should I be entitled to 100 billion dollars? I don't think so. I should figure what it would have taken me printing wise, hard cover wise, paper wise, editor wise etc, and then come up with a price - then deduct that amount from each books sale to arrive what would be a reasonable price for each copy i sell. Then I look at how many potential copies I would sell if it were a real hardcover book and use that to base me projection on. If I charged little enough for my product to be very affordable to everyone and it was a good quality book, then I should expect perhaps slightly higher than normal sales within reason. Say 5000 copies @ 5 dollars a copy ( instead of 5000 copies @ 50 dollars a copy) . After I reach that the product reaches End of Life status and I can no longer sell it without making changes to it making it a new product. If your product is good enough and affordable enough, people will buy it making your projection of 5000 copies at 5 bucks a pop a real good deal for you. If no one likes it but 1000 people dont know that yet and want to sample it so they download it, then get rid of the trash, you should not be entitled to money from them. This would both force people to make only high quality items at fair prices. This would be most fair for everyone but people won't do it so - it then brings you back to the original solution - change the technology so the item cant be copied.



posted on Apr, 10 2013 @ 02:36 PM
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reply to post by pheonix358
 


Don't get carried away.

The publishing world is bigger than it ever was, and richer too, Lots of people still read books published by the big houses. More people than ever see movies in theaters. CD's still sell, despite what you hear, though file sharing impacted certain genres first and hardest. Indie's were early adopters for file sharing but pop, classic rock (AOR) and country still do brisk trade, even if they are not growing as fast as before.

Yes -- author direct / print-to-order and other net-only schemes created new markets, and some have found success there. Most self-published authors are in the same boat as they were before the net though, which is to say -- they don't make anything close to a living from doing it.

What the Internet really did was create new categories. It hasn't really replaced any of the old ones (yet). If history is any judge it will be decades before we see the full effects of the decentralization of information. In the meantime, enjoy the ride.
edit on 10-4-2013 by 0zzymand0s because: (no reason given)






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