According to the group, 25.6 million Americans have illegally downloaded a full-length movie from the Internet. That’s 18 percent of the total US online population.
2,600 Americans took part in the study via telephone and on the web. The study found that users basically don’t believe or care that movie studios are losing money when someone illegally downloads a movie. Interestingly, 78 percent of the people found stealing a DVD from a store to be a “serious offence”, but only 40 percent considered downloading a movie to be just as bad.
Director of the study, Kaan Yigit said in a statement that the movie industry was suffering from the “Robin Hood effect” due to the large profits it makes. “There is a Robin Hood effect — most people perceive celebrities and studios to be rich already and as a result don’t think of movie downloading as a big deal,” he said.
Just as we noted in a recent piece, the study found that unless a legal offering is competitive enough, users are not going to stop downloading pirated movies. “The current crop of ‘download to own’ movie services and the new ones coming into the market will need to offer greater flexibility of use, selection and low prices to convert the current users to their services — otherwise file-sharing will continue to thrive,” said Yigit.
Here’s a direct link to the press release. (PDF)