|Title:||Is the Devil in the Data? A Literature Review of Piracy Around the World|
|Author(s):||Nixon K. Kariithi|
|Citation:||Kariithi, Nixon K. Is the devil in the data? A literature review of piracy around the world. The Journal of World Intellectual Property 14.2 (2011): 133-154.|
|Key Related Studies:|
|About the Data|
|Data Description:||No original data. This study utilises a literature review of 120 studies, comparing the difference between studies that use the Business Software Alliance statistics on software piracy and those studies that do not accept the BSA statistics as valid data.|
|Secondary Data Sources:|
|Data Collection Methods:|
|Data Analysis Methods:|
|Cross Country Study?:||Yes|
|Government or policy study?:||No|
|Time Period(s) of Collection:|
This article examines the scholarly literature pertaining to music, film and software piracy around the world, with special attention to data sources, research scope and general findings. The article finds that the conspicuous absence of methodologies utilizing critical theory in this broad literature has constricted the world view of piracy, resulting in monolithic explanations of the causes and correlates of piracy. It further identifies systematic biases relating to the unjustified use of data published by the industry watchdog Business Software Alliance (BSA).
Main Results of the Study
- The existing literature on piracy, while in general all focusing on piracy in the music, software or film industries, is disparate and not robust in its findings.
- Too often the research assumes that actions of pirates and non-pirates are mutually exclusive.
- There is too much reliance on the piracy statistics produced by the Business Software Alliance, a US industry body who are not impartial on the subject of piracy.
Policy Implications as Stated By Author
- Studying shifts in the perception of society towards piracy is important for policy makers in determining effective policy.
- Piracy has complex effects on the industry and these need to be understood so as to ensure any increase in social welfare is not lost by engaging in anti-piracy measures.