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Another study gets it right. It’s not the laws, stupid.

I’ve beaten the whole piracy issue to death on this and many other blogs over and over and over again. And when I got bored, I did it a little more. I’ve written on here about other people and/or corporate entities dealing directly with the record labels up here and coming away bloody. If there’s anything more I can say that I haven’t already repeated in at least two of those entries, I can’t find it. And y’know, the harder I look, the more I see of the exact same reasons for/against the whole issue of piracy. And the more I see of national governments taking their queues from the US entertainment industry instead of looking at the actual expectations held by consumers of this overly locked down content. Still, it’s nice to see studies like this one, coming out of a partnership between the US Social Science research council and the Canadian International Development Research Center, investigating the effect the various forms of legislation actually have on piracy in developing countries as an example–none, if you’re curious.

“The failure of legal markets to provide access to goods at prices that are affordable in terms of local incomes fuels a situation in which high piracy becomes the primary form of media access,” said study editor Joe Karaganis.

According to the study, a copy of Microsoft Office is five to 10 times more expensive in an emerging economy like Brazil or South Africa, compared to prices in the U.S. or Europe.

Translate this to music, TV shows, video games that may not necessarily be available/accessible in countries outside the US, or indeed within the US if folks want to access, for instance, UK content, and it applies just as well. I don’t expect this to have much of an effect on the next attempt at Canadian copyright legislation post-election, but this is still nice to see. Not everyone’s accepting the entertainment industry’s notion that the sky is falling. Now if we could just convince the entertainment industry to stop pushing it.

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