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Survey: Education could halve LatAm piracy

A survey from digital platform security specialist Irdeto has found that 70 per cent of Latin American consumers polled in Argentina, Brazil, Colombia and Mexico are watching pirated video content. The survey also found that education about the damage that piracy causes could go a long way in the region.

Of those consumers who watch pirated video content, more than half (59 per cent) said that knowing the damage piracy causes the content creation industry would make them watch less or stop watching pirated video content.

Of the countries surveyed online by YouGov, consumers who are 18-24 years old in Colombia (91 per cent), Argentina (89 per cent), Mexico (85 per cent) and Brazil (78 per cent) all led as the highest age bracket of consumers who admitted to pirating video content. On the opposite end of the spectrum, consumers 55+ were the lowest offenders in Colombia (56 per cent), Argentina (40 per cent), Mexico (64 per cent) and Brazil (39 per cent).

However, from the responses it was clear that education in each of the countries surveyed may have a significant impact on piracy. Mexico (67 per cent), Colombia (62 per cent) and Brazil (62 per cent) all had similarly high response rates regarding the number of consumers who pirate content and would stop or watch less if they knew more about the damage piracy causes the media industry. However, the survey found that consumers residing in Argentina do not care as much about piracy’s negative impact, with only 43 per cent saying this knowledge would lessen or stop their consumption of pirated video content.

“While the number of consumers in Latin America that watch pirated video content is still quite high, it is promising that additional education in the region could have a positive outcome in the fight against piracy,” said Gabriel Ricardo Hahmann, Sales Director for Brazil and the Southern Cone, Irdeto. “We know that a comprehensive anti-piracy approach is a mix of education, content availability, ease of access, cost and security measures. Combined with watermarking, detection and enforcement, each of these components make up a comprehensive 360-degree anti-piracy strategy to disrupt pirate business models.”

While Latin American consumers are watching pirated content, many do this while fully aware that this practice is illegal. Of those surveyed, 75 per cent of Latin American consumers say that the act of someone sharing or producing pirated content is illegal, while only 60 per cent say it is illegal for consumers to stream or download pirated video content. The survey also found a wide gap between the number of consumers in Colombia (54 per cent) that say it is illegal to stream or download pirated content versus the number of Colombians (76 per cent) that stated it is illegal to seed or share pirated content. This indicates that education should be conducted in Colombia to inform consumers about the illegal role they play when consuming pirated content.

“Pirates know that the trinity of content, value and convenience is critical to attracting consumers. If legitimate operators are not providing this, pirates will take advantage of any gap,” said Rory O’Connor, Vice President of Services, Irdeto. “Content distributors are addressing consumer demand by offering new and innovative services that enable honest people to watch legally. When this innovation is combined with a robust 360-degree anti-piracy strategy, content owners and operators can deter consumers from illegal offerings and prevent pirates from stealing.”

Regarding the types of content that are of most interest to Latin America consumers who pirate, TV series (22 per cent), movies that are currently in theatres (21 per cent) and DVD editions of movies (19 per cent) were the top three most sought after pirated content. Live sports and Blu-ray editions of movies ranked toward the bottom with only 8 per cent and 6 per cent, respectively. While live sports ranked toward the bottom, it was significantly more popular with males in Latin America. Of those surveyed, 14 per cent of males stated that pirated live sports the content was of most interest compared to only 3 per cent of females.

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