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TV Shows Help Spur Jump in DVD Piracy

Jul 8, 2008  •  Post A Comment

About 27% more people are illegally copying DVDs this year than a year ago, according to a May survey. Much of the growth was driven by a surge in television show duplication by U.K. customers.
U.S. consumers were more successful in their attempts at pirating content than those in the U.K., probably due to varying copy protection technology.
About 33% of those polled said they’d made copies of DVDs within the past six months, averaging about two titles a month, U.K.-based consultant Futuresource said this week. The company surveyed about 5,500 people in the U.S. and the U.K.
In the U.K., copying of TV show DVDs jumped 45%, more than offsetting a slight drop in movie copying.
Such consumer behavior may hinder sales of DVDs, which fell slightly last year to about $24 billion. However, sales may rise this year, with Blu-ray’s emergence as the single next-generation DVD-player format more than tripling revenue from high-definition discs to about $1 billion this year.
About three-quarters of those surveyed by Futuresource said they’d buy at least some of the titles they were searching for had they not been able to copy them, with about a quarter of the potential purchasers saying they’d pay full retail price.
“The number of people admitting to copying prerecorded DVDs has increased since 2007,” Futuresource said. “The vast majority of these copiers admit they would purchase at least some of the titles on DVD if they had not been able to copy them, clearly indicating the significant levels of lost revenue due to home copying.”
Futuresource didn’t estimate how much piracy was costing studios in lost sales. Worldwide piracy cost video game publishers about $3 billion last year, according to trade group Entertainment Software Association, while the Entertainment Merchants Association pegged piracy costs in 2004, the most recent year that trade group estimated, at about $1 billion. About 40% of U.S. customers copying film titles didn’t own the original DVD, which was either rented, borrowed or previously copied, while 48% of U.K. copying consumers didn’t own the original disc, Futuresource said.
Additionally, about 57% of U.S. customers were successful at copying high-selling film titles while about a third of U.K. consumers were able to make copies of the so-called “blockbuster” films.
(1:40 p.m.: Corrected figure for DVD sales)

45 Comments

  1. This increase is directly the result of hollywood’s greedy decision to force cable & satellite providers to use DRM to restrict legal DRV copying.
    Most people ARE NOT pirates but when you take away their rights, some feel more entitled to other options.

  2. I agree with Walt. Take away our rights and we feel a need to bring it back to what _we_ feel is equal footing. Act reasonably and it doesn’t have to go to such lengths.

  3. when will media co’s realise that in most western countries a ‘moral majority’ exists, and as such DVD piracy is in fact simply word of mouth advertising.

  4. “About 33% of those polled said they’d made copies of DVDs within the past six months”
    “The vast majority of these copiers admit they would purchase at least some of the titles on DVD if they had not been able to copy them, clearly indicating the significant levels of lost revenue due to home copying.”
    This set of phrases leads to a few questions…
    1) When in the heck is it illegal to simply COPY a DVD? According to the law as it is, Its illgela to distribute or show the DVD contents. Not the copying of the content for backup and personal use.
    2) Does this mean that the public is not educated on what is legal? I belive so. Not to meniton the questions posed may have been skewed. The problem is who paid for the research? That shows potential skewing of information.
    3) Is part of the actual illegal number known as copying a part of “downloading,” which technically is not “copying” at all.
    4) There are such programs to bypass multiple copyguard technologies and regions. Shouldn’t this have been a factor in this report too? I would have thought a mention on copy protection/encrypting overriding software would have a factor here, since it’s inception assisted in the copying of copywrited materials, infringing upon “legal” copywrites and artistic ownerships. Some of those same technologies and programs have been in the news lately.
    I’m always glad to see when reports are not accurate or incomplete. Makes me look smarter when I see inconsistancies and facts not proven. This is one of them.

  5. There seems to be no middle ground between a fair business model and the consumer’s fair use rights. The copyright holders need to be protected, but it’s not fair that consumers have to pay multiple time for the same content. You should be able to pay for one movie one time and be able to watch it’s on all different formats and devices. We should NOT have to pay multiple times for DVD, HD DVD Blu-Ray, iPod, PSP, mobile phones, etc. etc. Until a fair business model is developed, there will always be DVD copy software programs out there like 1 Click DVD Copy and DVDneXtCopy that enable users to rip, convert, burn and copy DVD movies. BTW, all the best DVD best burning programs are listed, ranked, reviewed and compared side-by-side at: http://www.dvdxcopy.com

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