7 million illegal downloaders cost economy "tens of billions" – yeah okay

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pirate-bay-logo.jpgSeven-million people in the UK use illegal downloads – apparently costing the economy tens of billions of pound according to government advisors.

Researcher found that 1.3 million people use one file sharing site per weekday, which compared to the size of the population hardly seems like an epidemic.

The Strategic Advisory Board for Intellectual Property (SABIP) warned it may be hard to change attitudes – although some say it’s not attitudes that need to change but the industry who still charge a disproportionate amount for digital copies.

The government says work must be done internationally to tackle the problem.

Intellectual Property Minister, (a whole minister – is that really necessary?) David Lammy said the report put into context the impact illegal downloads had on copyright industries and the UK economy as a whole.

“This is not an issue confined by national boundaries and I am sure that other [EU] member states and their copyright industries will find this report of use in the development of policy,” added Mr Lammy.

An alliance (or “greedy-hoard”) of nine UK bodies representing the creative industries joined trades unions to call on the government to force internet service providers to cut off persistent illegal file-sharers. And everyone knows, if there is one sector you don’t want to piss off it’s the creative industries – imagine a strike, no Doctors, no Eastenders, no Holby, no One Show, imagine the chaos. Imagine the silence. Bliss.

ISPs have gallantly shirked any responsibility reiterating that it isn’t their job to police the internet.

What this all goes to show is that the government and people doing the government’s research still fundamentally don’t understand downloading.

They aren’t costing the economy tens of billions of pounds, that is nothing but propaganda and scaremongering. Using the flagging economy to turn the screw on a kid who’s downloaded the latest version of Photoshop CS4 so he can put the head of the kid that bullies him at school on a camel seems frankly, a bit much.

What these researchers are suggesting is that downloaders would buy every movie, song or program they’ve torrented, P2Pd or USBd, and that’s just not the case. They’d do without.

And maybe the government have decided now isn’t exactly the best time for MPs to be sounding off about freeloading: Because filling in a claims form and taking public money to clean your moat is, undeniably, far more devious, than downloading Space Cowboys.

Clint Eastwood, Donald Sutherland and Tommy Lee Jones – in space! Amazing.

(Via BBC)

TechDigest writer

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