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EU study reveals music has seen the sharpest decline in piracy


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The good news in 2019 about piracy has been that it’s declining for music. The latest evidence comes from a study published by the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) examining consumption of copyright-infringing content across the 28 EU member states between January 2017 and September 2018.

“Between 2017 and 2018, overall access to pirated content declined by 15%,” is the report’s topline finding. “The decline was most pronounced in music, at 32%, followed by film (19%) and TV (8%).” And TV accounted for nearly 60% of the total copyright-infringement activity tracked, followed by film with music in third. EUIPO used data from piracy-tracking firm Muso for the study. Its publication follows other reports earlier this year offering a similarly-positive message. In March, Muso claimed that music-piracy sites attracted 30bn visits in 2018 alone, while in September the IFPI revealed that 27% of the 34,000 people it surveyed for its ‘Music Listening 2019’ study said they’d pirated in the last month. The key point being that both of those figures represented downward trends: Muso’s year-prior report had claimed there were 73.9bn visits to music-piracy sites in 2017, so the 2018 figure was a reduction of 59.4%.

Meanwhile, the IFPI’s previous consumer study, in 2018, found that 38% of respondents had pirated in the last month – and thus its 2019 figure was down by 11 percentage points.

Stuart Dredge

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