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Piracy is driven by availability and price

by on27 February 2019

People don't want to break the law

A new study carried out by New Zealand telecoms group Vocus Group NZ has concluded that "piracy isn't driven by law-breakers" but by the availability of legal content and the ability to pay.

Vocus warns that it is better to cater to the needs of pirates rather than just blocking them - which never works.

According to a new study commissioned by New Zealand telecoms group Vocus Group NZ and conducted in December 2018, this enhanced availability is having a positive effect.

“Legitimate streaming content providers are achieving what was impossible for Hollywood to get right: they are stamping out piracy by making available the shows people want to enjoy at a reasonable cost and with maximum convenience”, Vocus announced.

The company believes that “piracy is dying a natural death” as more locals choose to access content legitimately, via legal services that are accessible and easier to use than pirate options.

Taryn Hamilton, Consumer General Manager at Vocus Group said that people are moving away from piracy because it is more hassle than it’s worth” said:  “The research confirms something many internet pundits have long instinctively believed to be true: law-breakers don't drive piracy, it’s driven by people who can’t easily or affordably get the content they want.”

An overwhelming majority (75 percent) of those surveyed said that free-to-air TV services are their weapons of choice for viewing content, with 61 percent using free on-demand channels offered by broadcasters. Around 58 percent of respondents said they visit the cinema, with paid streaming services such as Netflix used by 55 percent.

Of course, piracy still figures into the equation, but according to Vocus, the practice is on a downward trend.

The company’s study shows that 11 percent of consumers now obtain copyrighted content via illegal streaming platforms, with around 10 percent downloading infringing material via torrent and similar services.

“Generally the survey has said that the vast minority of people are undertaking piracy – it’s just too hard. People prefer to pay for good quality, cheap, legal content, so we think that’s the best way forward”, Hamilton said.

While Vocus says it conducted its research to validate its view of the market and the belief that streaming services are vital in dealing with piracy, the company also has other concerns. A review of New Zealand’s Copyright Act is underway, and Hamilton expresses a preference for dialogue over legal action.

“We certainly don’t want a judicial approach, where it goes in front of a court, and one judge sets a precedent. We think it should be debated through the copyright amendment process”, he added.

Vocus insists that the solution can be found using a straightforward formula – give people the content they want, in a format they can consume, at a price they can afford.


Last modified on 27 February 2019
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