‘Canada is a Video Piracy Hotspot While Brazil Sees Piracy in Decline’

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A recent report estimated that there were over 141 billion visits to pirate sites in 2023. This number is large, but rather meaningless without proper context. Today, we take a look at how piracy trends are evolving in different countries. Canada emerges as a piracy hotspot, while Brazil shows a decline in piracy rates. Meanwhile, there are plenty of piracy growth regions too.

canada flagLast week, new data published by piracy tracking firm MUSO and consulting firm Kearney showed that video piracy is growing globally.

With over 141 billion annual visits worldwide, there’s a massive audience outside of legal channels.

The full report was yet to be made available at the time of our initial report. While that doesn’t change any of the overall conclusions, there are some extra details worth highlighting.

Classifying Countries by Piracy Volume and Growth

The full report includes a rather insightful graph that ranks countries based on the number of visits to pirate sites per citizen, and how the rate has changed between 2018 and 2023. This allows for an intuitive comparison and highlights where piracy presents the biggest threat.

These two data points make it possible to classify countries into four buckets:

Hotspots: Pirate site visits per capita are high and growing
Recovering: Pirate site visits per capita are high but declining
Growth Risk: Pirate site visits per capita are low but growing
Positive Sign: Pirate site visits per capita are low and declining

In graph form the results look like this, with the piracy hotspots in the top right quadrant, and the growth risks in the top left.

Piracy volume vs. growth rate (large)

piracy countries

Canada vs. Brazil

Based on the presented data, Canada is classified as one of the piracy hotspots. The country has a relatively high number of pirate site visits per capita (+90) and that number also grew roughly 50% between 2018 and 2023.

Other hotspots include Sweden, Hong Kong and Qatar. Meanwhile, Singapore has by far the largest number of pirate site visits per capita, but with a relatively low growth rate compared to the other hotspots.

On the other end of the graph (bottom left), we find Japan where the piracy frequency is low and declining. The same also applies to Brazil to a lesser degree, which may be in part the result of the broad and frequent piracy crackdowns in the Latin American country.

Growth Risks (including the U.S.)

The bottom right of the graph is mostly empty but countries such as New Zealand and Portugal appear to be ‘recovering’. This means that they have relatively high piracy numbers, but those have declined over the past years.

Finally, there are the “growth risks”. These include countries where the piracy volume is relatively low, but growing rapidly.

This quadrant logically includes countries where broadband access has grown significantly over the past years. India, Nigeria, and Ghana are the top contenders here, all with a growth rate of more than 100%.

Interestingly, the United States is also classified as a growth risk. While it has dominated in absolute piracy traffic for years, the number of visits per capita were relatively low. However, the piracy rate is rising in the U.S. too.

All in all, the graph provides an easy-to-understand overview of how visits to video pirate sites are developing in various countries. It will be interesting to see how these trends develop over time.


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