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Pirates Are Valuable Customers, Not The Enemy


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New research has revealed that 60 percent of all UK citizens have used pirate services to stream or download TV, films or music. However, the vast majority of these self-proclaimed pirates say they tend to find legal options first. These and other findings suggest that piracy remains an availability problem and that 'pirates' are among the most engaged consumers.



Online piracy is often portrayed as a simple problem. People download or stream something that’s not theirs because they don’t want to pay.


While this may apply in some cases, the reality is much more complex. In fact, over the years research has repeatedly shown that pirates are often the entertainment industry’s best customers.


Today, there are new findings to back this claim up. And to add some weight, they are released by the London-based anti-piracy company MUSO, which works closely with various copyright holders.


The company conducted a survey among 1,000 UK adults, through CitizenMe, to shed more light on how and why pirates consume content the way they do. The findings are noteworthy, to say the least.


Of all the people surveyed the vast majority, 60 percent, admitted that they illegally streamed or downloaded music, film or TV-shows in the past. This could have been yesterday or even two years ago.


Interestingly, the same pirates often try legal sources first. In fact, 83 percent say they usually try to find what they are looking for through official channels before trying anything else. This suggests that most pirates are also legal consumers.


“The entertainment industry tends to envisage piracy audiences as a criminal element, and writes them off as money lost – but they are wrong to do so,” says Paul Briley, CCO of MUSO, commenting on the findings.


“The reality is that the majority of people who have gone through the effort of finding and accessing such unlicensed content are, first and foremost, fans – fans who are more often than not trying to get content legally if they can.”


The problem appears to be that these pirates often can’t find what they’re looking for through their preferred legal channels. The top reasons for people to ‘pirate’ are that content is not available (34.9%), that it’s siloed or difficult to access (34.7%), or that they can’t afford it (35.2%).


MUSO notes that copyright holders should not dismiss the pirate audience as these people are actually engaged and valuable consumers. Instead, the entertainment industries should look for better ways to serve this crowd.


In recent years Hollywood has already made a lot of effort to make content available online. And while Netflix and other streaming services have made a positive impact, they’re not a silver bullet.


MUSO’s survey reveals that 91% of all pirates already have a streaming subscription, such as Netflix, Amazon Prime, Spotify or Apple Music. That’s more than their non-pirating counterparts, of which less than 80% subscribe to one of these services.


The problem is that people sometimes need over a dozen separate subscriptions to access all the content they want. There’s no single service that offers everything in one place. This is one of the main reasons why piracy is still very relevant.


“There is a prevailing myth that streaming services have killed piracy, but unfortunately this just isn’t the case,” Briley notes.


“While streaming services have made huge amounts of content more readily available, it’s still siloed. The results of this survey demonstrate that if the show consumers are looking for isn’t available on their particular on-demand service, they will turn to unlicensed alternatives because it is too expensive to subscribe to every single service.”


MUSO’s previous research has shown that streaming piracy remains on the rise and this trend could continue going forward, for video at least.


It’s also worth mentioning that most pirates know very well that they are not supposed to do so. More than half, 53 percent, said that they think it is wrong to pirate, which is a higher percentage than those who never downloaded or streamed illegally.


While people’s reasons to pirate are clear, the solution is not as straightforward. Simply offering all content under one roof might solve the piracy problem, but it doesn’t automatically mean that more revenue will come in.


The film industry, in particular, relies heavily on complex rights deals, windowed releases, and exclusivity agreements. And with Disney launching its own streaming service, this may only get worse.



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Research results in statistics and as I was taught there are three things in life; lies, damn lies, and statistics.  People lie to look good when they are being asked questions about illegal or questionable behavior and their answers should be taken with a grain of salt.  There is no greater example of how wrong statistics could be than the result of the 2016 Presidential Election in the U.S.

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1 hour ago, straycat19 said:

Research results in statistics and as I was taught there are three things in life; lies, damn lies, and statistics.  People lie to look good when they are being asked questions about illegal or questionable behavior and their answers should be taken with a grain of salt.  There is no greater example of how wrong statistics could be than the result of the 2016 Presidential Election in the U.S.

One day you see statistics and you see it and say golly gee that's good info i can use against the members here and the next it damn lies why dont you make your mind up? Statistics are fine as long as you agree with them it seems . You dont know shit about pirates then because most all of them pay for some stuff if they can afford it.  One pirate that use to help me out back in the day he was forever buying stuff and is a member of this site. He was the reason I join this site in 2007 and I  have to put up with govt. shills like you when on here. my .my, how times have changed. If it was not for a pirate who bought things you would even never meet me online. You are so far out  of touch bro!  I have pirate friends i only talk to in encrypted IM  and there just like me they buy stuff.  games .software and pay to go to the movies witch is not cheap. Also i buy stuff .  I dont pay to go see no movies i live so far away from the theaters but I pay for satellite TV.  


How do statistics from CitizenMe have anything to do with  the left winged mainstream media who is still sore about there polls being wrong ? For all we now they may of been right and it was rigged by the Republicans they made a deal some how and they tried to shift the blame off on other countries . .  it would not been the 1st  Republican president got in there from a rigged election. It happen when  Rutherford B. Hayes got in  they removed  the union troops from the south in order to get Rutherford in, they made a deal , because the South was about to rise  again , if   Democrat Samuel J. Tilden got in .  and I'm pretty sure it happen when the young Bush got in there too, only thing saved him  his brother was gov of Fla. all elections are rigged but the ones were they win the  popular vote and the electoral vote.


They most likely had dirt on HRC and cut a deal and gave her immunity and blamed it on the Russians. and every since  the  Democrats want to pay them back it makes sense if you study history, something got them upset that's for sure.. You know how many times the USA melded in other countries elections and put puppet governments in?  it was a lot so there kind of like you it's ok as long as it done they way they want it.  So how could we trust them with our own? Really there was no one to chose from but a bigot and a crook nether one was right for the job but HRC  is the one who won the  popular vote and the one the masses wanted in. :lol:

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