Online Piracy has become a global issue with the massive growth of the internet. With nearly ¼ of internet bandwidth being used for piracy, people are finding new ways of pirating material. The issue doesn’t seem too severe to those who are benefiting from pirating but to businesses, which are losing money, this is a big issue. Businesses are losing millions of dollars to internet piracy. It is estimated that the software industry is losing 20.6% of  their income, the music industry is losing 18.5% of their income and the music industry is losing 65.5% of their income from piracy yearly.

Below is information about the current situation as well as potential solutions for the future:



Question and Answer:


1. How big of a problem is online piracy?

Online piracy has developed into a massive international problem. Charts like the one below show that if the people who pirate files bought them instead, the software, music, and motion picture industries could bring in significantly more income.


See References:

1.Provides data for chart which shows internet bandwidth used for piracy


2.Articles providing data for slide3 of the PowerPoint

Income lost on software:

Software income:

Income lost in music industry:

Income for music industry:

Income lost in movie industry:

Income for movie industry:

Income lost to sea pirates:

Global economy income:


3.Provides graph on online piracy worldwide


4.Data ranking countries by number of songs downloaded from BitTorrent including graph found on slide 5 of PowerPoint


5.Infographic including spending chart on money spent on prevention of piracy


6.Article  providing data about RIAA lawsuits discussed on slide 7 of the PowerPoint


7.Provides data for graph showing amount of bit torrent quarterly


8.Data surrounding eDonkey2000, including graph found on slide 9 of PowerPoint


9.Supplemental data about eDonkey2000 (slide 9)


10.Article discussing how Netflix causes piracy to drop (slide 10)


11.Provides supplemental information about Hulu for slide 11 of the PowerPoint


12.Article discussing availability of media and piracy and provides data for slide 11 of the PowerPoint



13.Research article discussing practical solutions to online piracy (discussed on slide 12)

General Information:

Article talking about availability of material and piracy


General statistics about piracy


General information about current anti-piracy tactics


Comments (9)

  1. Anthony Freitas de Oliveira


    I do agree that Piracy is a huge problem in our society. It makes decrease significantly the profit of companies and it causes impact in the creation of jobs. In the other hand, in countries that have high taxing the products as software’s is very expensive and sometimes people have no choice instead of to buy a piracy product that cost fifty percent less than the original. What I am arguing here is that the companies should offer affordable products especially in high taxing countries to avoid the piracy of their products.

  2. Josh


    This article was definitely an eye opener. We’ve all been hearing about internet piracy for years. It seems that that it is an issue that may never cease, and only continue to get worse. I feel that because businesses and the music industry have tried to control and regulate all the digital media, people are more likely to try and pirate. It’s as if it’s a some sort of game or challenge that people enjoy the thrill of “getting away with it.” They don’t think about the consequences because they haven’t been caught yet. They use the excuse that “everyone does it” so the authorities couldn’t possible punish everybody. It’s pretty amazing that 1/4 of the internet bandwidth is used for piracy! We can clearly deduce that the more authorities try to control, the more people will go against it.

  3. Stephen Phelps


    What an interesting article to understand the results of attempting to exercise control and influence on others. I especially enjoyed the solution to make the content more affordable that people will no longer “need to” pirate digital media any longer. Understanding how piracy can’t be controlled or stopped it is important for us to consider viable alternatives that allow people to choose to change. “From 2006-2008, the RIAA spent $64.7 million on legal fees and only received $1.36 million in settlements,” it was surprising to me to see the shocking results of organizations and companies trying to exercise control on others. It will be interesting to see how potential solutions are implemented because currently individuals are benefited and the only ones willing to attempt to control this issue are corporations that are loosing billions of dollars because of this issue.

  4. Matthew Langford


    In this article a few different things are shown and come to my attention. First thing, piracy is a way is the acts of people believing that “we deserve this.” So many times I hear people say that music industries or so forth are making so much money that in return getting free music or whatever is not an issue. When it reality it is. First off, it is dishonest no matter which way you look at it and even though industries may be making money, it still has a huge impact on them. Also, this article show how control does not resolve the issues. When more control is attempted, the desired result is more negative. We see this time and time again.

  5. Brian Snedden


    This was an interesting article, because it dominantly written for the user to understand the issue without having to read an entire book like most other articles.

    I was attempting to ponder ideas on how to stop online piracy, but it seems that it may be able to be mitigated but not completely removed from society. The statistic, “From 2006-2008, the RIAA spent $64.7 million on legal fees and only received $1.36 million in settlements,” was shocking to me.

    Quit pirating things people, its hurting the companies that provide awesome movies/music to us!

  6. Cody Pizzaia


    Piracy is an issue but to say that businesses are losing a vast amount of income to it is a misnomer. The biggest issues with the numbers that is apparent to me is that how did they measure the amount of lost sales? Did they just total up the amount of times it was downloaded illegally and then chalk every one of those times up to a lost sale? If so the numbers are substantially inflated as I’m positive that not everyone would have bought that item if there was no free way of getting the item. Analyzing this with IMT leads me to believe that trying to create a fear based environment by increasing lawsuits is not the answer and only attempts to treat the symptoms. The initial conditions of why people pirate is what should be looked at and evaluated, A good start to minimizing piracy is to provide a service and a medium that is easy to use as people value convenience and when you make it far more convenient and enjoyable to buy something legally then piracy numbers will decrease.

  7. Saransh Prasad


    Studying IMT, I have realized this that to try to determine an outcome without understanding the ramifications of the initial conditions and events that led to piracy being so rampant is not a worthwhile exercise. Without having understood the initial conditions ie as to why piracy started in the first place one can only go on so as to try and predict multiple outcomes. Also given even if piracy is controlled to an extent then what are the benefits passed on to the end user and not for lining the pockets or boosting the profits of the companies only. To successfully eradicate piracy more than just lawsuits or seizing of online data will be required. A better way would be if the music labels etc tried to distribute the data at cheaper rates so that the end user does not feel cheated in anyway.

  8. John


    Piracy is a world-wide problem and an increasingly problem. If a website is shutdown, another one will start up. It is a costly and time consuming process trying to stop piracy. Businesses lose millions of dollars, including the actual artists. The lost money leads to less money to put into production quality and other business investments. The only true way to stop piracy is for the users to choose to. It is impossible for the government to lock down on everyone.

  9. Vahid


    The Piracy of transferable material is becoming (better saying: has become) a serious issue for certain businesses nowadays. When we look into the information out there and statistics in this regard, we see that with better technologies of copying the material without ruining the quality, more people tend to have free yet qualitatively acceptable material, although it is not ethical and could have some sort of risk. Another interesting thing is the data we have about increase of piracy of NBC after their conflict with apple store! It shows that people want something they get it! I think this piracy is somehow inevitable to some extent, because no matter how much the government spends on protection, hackers and IT people will find a way to break the walls! And I doubt if we can make piracy more expensive than the material’s price (It’s almost always free). Because ultimately it seems to be only the matter of cost! Forgetting about ethics (which is unfortunately very common) there are two options: Buying it from the original source, or downloading from the free sources! Which one you would do?!

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