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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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RE: numbers game
By The Irish Patient on 3/7/2008 2:05:12 PM , Rating: 2
You corrected an error in the report without realizing it.

The report says "motion picture piracy costs the U.S. economy about $20.5 billion annually" whereas your post analyzes the loss to the motion picture industry .

I don't doubt that piracy causes a substantial loss to the industry, even if it isn't as high as $20B.

What I don't believe is that movie piracy causes a substantial loss to the U.S. economy as a whole. Few Americans would put any of their money into savings even if their lives depended on it. If Timmy does a rent and rip of Transformers, the industry loses $20 but Timmy now has an extra $20 in his pocket. Timmy will inevitably spend the $20 on something else, resulting in extra revenue to some other sector of the economy.

Government and industry claims for losses to the U.S. economy always assume that Timmy sets fire to the $20 bill saved by ripping Transformers. Government has a legitimate public interest in passing sufficient laws to make copyrights enforceable. But there is not enough evidence of harm to the U.S. economy to justify some of the Draconian laws that Congress has passed, or tried to pass, for the benefit of the music and movie industries.


"I want people to see my movies in the best formats possible. For [Paramount] to deny people who have Blu-ray sucks!" -- Movie Director Michael Bay











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