In Indonesia, Women Pirate More Music and Movies Than Men

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Piracy was traditionally seen as something that predominantly young males were interested in. This is a largely outdated representation of reality, as girls and women began to catch up a long time ago. In some countries, including Indonesia, more women pirate music, movies, and TV-shows than their male counterparts.

indonesianAt the start of the last decade, The Pirate Bay teamed up with Sweden’s Lund University to conduct the largest online piracy survey in history.

The research elicited responses from 75,000 ‘pirates’ from all parts of the world. Despite this geographical diversity, a rather traditional gender pattern appeared. Of all respondents, only 5% were female.

These findings were rather extreme but they fit the old stereotypical image of ‘the online pirate’ as a young, somewhat nerdy male. While that might have been relatively accurate 25 years ago, piracy audiences are much more diverse today.

Recent studies have shown more diverse age distribution and increasingly gender is seen as a less relevant variable too. One of the largest longitudinal studies on piracy conducted by the European Union, doesn’t even mention gender as a factor anymore.

Research: Who Pirates and Why?

This doesn’t mean that there are no differences, of course, but these rarely add any explanatory value or new insights. That said, new findings published by researchers from Northumbria University Newcastle, which include gender, are worth highlighting.

The survey data, looking at piracy trends in Thailand and Indonesia, was released by Marketing professor Dr. Xuemei Bian and Ms. Humaira Farid. The results were presented to WIPO’s Advisory Committee on Enforcement recently and the associated presentation was published online.

Through an online survey and in-person interviews, the research aims to map consumer attitudes and behaviors in Indonesia and Thailand, particularly in connection with online copyright infringement.

One of the overall conclusions is that piracy remains a common activity in both Asian countries. Pirates are present in all age groups but and music, movies en TV-shows tend to be in highest demand and younger people. Those under 40, are more likely to pirate than their older counterparts.

These findings are not out of the ordinary and the same trends are visible in other countries too. Interestingly, however, some notable differences between the two countries appear when gender is added to the mix.

More Women than Men Pirate in Indonesia

The tables below show that women are more likely to pirate than men in Indonesia. This is true for all content categories, except for software, where men are slightly in the lead. In Thailand, however, men are more likely to pirate across all categories.

Pirating Genders

gender piracy

The researchers do not attempt to explain these differences. However, they show once again that ‘dated’ gender stereotypes don’t always match with reality. And when they have little explanatory value, one can question whether gender is even relevant in a piracy context.

Looking at other differences between Thai and Indonesian consumers there are some other notable findings. For example, in Indonesia, 64% of the respondents say they’re aware of the availability of pirated movies and TV-shows on YouTube, compared to ‘just’ 32% in Thailand.

Indonesian consumers are also more familiar with music piracy sites and pirate much more frequently than Thai consumers, as the table below shows.

Discouraging Factors

discouraging factors

Price vs. Convenience

Finally, the researchers also looked at various attitudes toward piracy. This shows that Thai pirates would be most likely to stop if legal services were more convenient, while Indonesian pirates see cheaper legal services as the largest discouraging factor.

All in all, the researchers conclude that these attitudes and the regional differences are important to take into account for policymakers.

“[P]olicies and anti-piracy strategies aimed at eliminating consumer piracy should take into account product category and consumer characteristics, as well as national level differences,” the researchers conclude.

Indonesian Anti-Camming PSA


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