Most Oz pirates willing to pay for content

Findings released by Australian consumer advocacy group CHOICE suggest that most Australian don’t download, stream or watch pirated TV shows or movies, but about a third have illegally downloaded or streamed content online.

CHOICE suggests this is because Australian consumers can’t find what they are looking for at a fair price. Nevertheless, they are willing to pay for content if it’s locally available and the offer is reasonable.

According to the survey of 1,046 Australians, the country has a chronic access and pricing problem.

“A substantial proportion of people are pirating because of the high cost of content in Australia, and the time differences between releases here and overseas,” said CHOICE Director of Campaigns and Communications Matt Levey.

“People who illegally download content are more likely to have a Quickflix account than the average Australian, and they are significantly more likely to pay to see a movie at the cinema,” he added.

“Some people have suggested we’re a nation of pirates, but CHOICE has found we’re a nation of couch potatoes who seek out content, online and off. This data shows that most Australians who pirate are even more willing to spend money on content than those who don’t pirate.”

In its submission to the Competition Policy Review Draft Report, CHOICE supported recommendations that would reduce piracy by facilitating cheaper content for Australians, including enabling more consumers to take legal steps to circumvent geo-blocks. As a content creator, CHOICE says it does not support or condone piracy.

Among the key survey findings:

  • 67 per cent of Australians never download or stream pirated movies or TV shows. 33 per cent of people have pirated content, and 23 per cent of people pirate content at least monthly.

  • 50 per cent of pirates said that their main reason for pirating was price, and 41 per cent said it was because they wanted specific content sooner than available in Australia.

  • Most consumers (55 per cent) try to use legal sources first, before searching out pirated copies of content.

  • People who pirate at least monthly are more likely to pay for content through an iTunes or Apple TV subscription. 29 per cent of people who pirate also pay for content through iTunes compared to 16 per cent of the general population and 12 per cent of people who never pirate.

  • Pirates are more likely to have a Quickflix account. 11 per cent of people who pirate at least monthly have a Quickflix account compared to 5 per cent of the general population and 3 per cent of people who never pirate.

  • People who pirate at least monthly are significantly more likely than the average person to go to the movies or cinema. 36 per cent of the general population go to the movies at least monthly, compared with 56 per cent of people who regularly pirate.

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