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  (Source: MPAA)
MPAA reports that 2007 saw one of the highest grossing years for the motion picture industry

The Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) relentlessly bombards the public with copyright and piracy information.  It plagued the news media for years with tireless finger pointing; even its own website is dedicated to giving the public information on copyright laws and piracy.  Different sections, such as Movie Thieves, offer information on who the criminals are and asks individuals to help in their “fight to stop movie thieves!”

The confusing part is the link in the “Latest News” section that claims an all-time high in domestic and global box office sales.  The global market grew 4.9% to $26.6 billion, claims the MPAA, and the U.S. domestic market grew roughly 5.4%, passing the $9.6 billion mark.

“From the threat and eventual reality of a writer’s strike to the global impact of film theft to concerns over the economy, the film industry faced significant challenges in 2007,” stated Dan Glickman, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the MPAA. “But, ultimately, we got our Hollywood ending. Once again, diverse, quality films and the timeless allure of the movie house proved a winning combination with consumers around the world.”

It is surprising to see the MPAA claim that the motion picture industry is taking a beating from piracy when their own data shows that the market is producing better than before. This is not to say, however, that piracy doesn't have an effect on the film industry.

According to a study done by the Institute for Public Innovation, motion picture piracy costs the U.S. economy about $20.5 billion annually which includes revenue and “related measures of economic performance”.  The related measure includes loss of jobs, decrease in earning for workers, and the U.S. governments loss of tax revenue.  The study claims that film industry would have added a little over 45,000 new jobs.

Even though the film industry is taking some large hits from piracy, you can rest a little easier knowing that the industry is still raking in quite a sum of cash.



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Common Sense
By gaakf on 3/7/2008 10:59:14 AM , Rating: 5
Most people pay to see movies they like, and pirate movies they probably wouldn't have paid to see.
The MPAA should just focus more on making movies people will like.




RE: Common Sense
By Phlargo on 3/7/2008 11:07:34 AM , Rating: 2
Bingo. Here's me. I do it with other things too. I preview things. If they are worth while, I always buy them. Most aren't and I don't keep them or finish them.


RE: Common Sense
By tmouse on 3/7/2008 12:21:00 PM , Rating: 2
Yea right... Let’s see the stock market would do much better if investors would focus more on buying stocks that are going to go up in value. The police would do better to go after real criminals. Yes the world would be better if everyone just succeeded instead of trying too, kind of a master of the obvious. Do you really think they actually TRY to make crap? The problem is what you like and what I like and what anyone else likes probably is not the same. I would agree I think a lot of the entertainment media produces fecal material (doesn't that more intellectual than shi@) but there are a lot of people paying to be entertained by it. I have never believed the argument "I only pirate the stuff I'm not interested in" to me that is the stupidest statement I can think of. Just ignore it; if no one sees it and there are not a bazillion copies of it floating around the net then someone WILL say maybe we should not make MORE of it. It’s that simple. If you would not pay for it, that is your right, BUT if you would not then you have absolutely no right to see it period! We are not talking food, water, air or rudimentary living conditions here, its entertainment. There is no constitutional right to be entertained. You pay; you take a chance if you do not like it then do not go to other movies by that director or with that actor. Do you ask for your money back if you go to a play or a comedy club and were not entertained... probably not. Piracy may or may not cost them money (It probably does the amount is debatable) but it also directly results in a continuation of the same level of mediocrity the industry produces by giving them excuses.


RE: Common Sense
By gaakf on 3/7/2008 4:20:02 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
If you would not pay for it, that is your right, BUT if you would not then you have absolutely no right to see it period!

So... If I worked at a movie theater, I should have to pay to see a movie when my shift is over?

And if I went over to a friend's place, I should pay him for allowing me to watch one of his DVDs?

What about playing a video game at Best Buy that I haven't paid for?

tmouse, I understand where you are coming from but your statement is a little extreme.

Just as with music, I do not think it's wrong to "preview" a movie when I am skeptical . If I see a movie I really like, regardless of where I saw it, you better believe I am going to go out and buy it.


RE: Common Sense
By TomZ on 3/7/2008 4:36:37 PM , Rating: 3
Unfortunately, intellectual property law doesn't work that way. The "free preview" that you describe is a right that the copyright owner can give out, not one for you to take. I think you should in general consider the rights of the other party - the people whose work you are "borrowing." They are people, too, with rights just like you. And you are depriving them of their rights.

It's no more right than breaking into a car at a car dealership and taking it for a test spin without the dealer's permission before deciding to buy it.


RE: Common Sense
By xRyanCat on 3/8/2008 1:59:23 PM , Rating: 2
I believe he meant it more like going to your friends house to test drive his new SUV, before going to buy your own. Or your friend has a Corvette, and you go to drag race in it once, but decide it's really not worth your money to go get your own.

In the same way as going to your friends to check out a movie, then deciding, yeah it was good, but not worth my money.


RE: Common Sense
By jtesoro on 3/7/2008 10:20:32 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
The MPAA should just focus more on making movies people will like.


That's a tough call. On one hand I agree with tmouse who said that they they don't actually TRY to make crap (i.e. something people will hate). They of course wouldn't want to make movies that lose money because people hate them. But they couldn't really know with any certainty what people will like and not like.

The flip side to this though is that a lot (maybe most) of the movies which make a lot of money are actually those which ARE crap. Those which some would say are "high quality" tend to attract a limited audience.

So what to do? As I said, that's a tough call!


RE: Common Sense
By sporr on 3/7/2008 12:24:00 PM , Rating: 2
Its just easier for the MPAA to place the blame on piracy for loss of revenue rather than adapting to the changing times.


RE: Common Sense
By TomZ on 3/7/2008 12:56:03 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
Most people pay to see movies they like, and pirate movies they probably wouldn't have paid to see.

I don't think "most people," i.e., more than 50%, pirate movies. Those who pirate movies are a small but vocal minority.

I will say, however, that there are a lot of people who are pretty ignorant about the difference between right and wrong. There are tons of people who, I think, don't even know that copying movies is illegal or bad in any way. For example, we received a Christmas gift from a relative, which was basically a home-made copy of a DVD set for a TV series. I don't think they even realized how messed up that is.

I'm not meaning to get preachy here, and I do recognize that the movie industry does go overboard in some ways, but I do think that people should try to do what is right, even if the technology makes it easy to do the wrong thing. In addition, I do think that more education is needed to at least inform people about copyright laws. After all, one could argue that the movie industry is just responding to widespread piracy, and that if that piracy didn't exist, they would have no need to respond with such Draconian tactics. It's kind of a chicken-and-egg thing.


RE: Common Sense
By masher2 (blog) on 3/7/2008 1:21:12 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
we received a Christmas gift from a relative, which was basically a home-made copy of a DVD set for a TV series
That might even top giving away the fruitcake you got for a gift the previous year...


RE: Common Sense
By theapparition on 3/10/2008 10:37:50 AM , Rating: 2
I swear they could stop making fruitcakes, and you'll still see one show up as a gift 20years from now.


RE: Common Sense
By gaakf on 3/7/2008 4:39:40 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
After all, one could argue that the movie industry is just responding to widespread piracy, and that if that piracy didn't exist, they would have no need to respond with such Draconian tactics.

This isn't a changing of the times though. Piracy has always been a factor as far back as I can remember with VHS. I really believe (in a general sense) that people who regularly pirate, are people who do not have the money to go out to the movies every week.

The movie industry always paints a picture that shows them losing billions of dollars that they wouldn't have had anyway if piracy didn't exist.


RE: Common Sense
By MrBlastman on 3/7/2008 3:42:55 PM , Rating: 2
Here Here!

I think the RIAA could learn a thing or two from your post as well.

At least we have Independent Films - I've seen quite a few ones recently that have been made in the last couple of years and each and every one of them have been far superior to most anything Hollywood has managed to produced.


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