Vallbé et al. (2019)
|Vallbé et al. (2019)|
|Title:||Knocking on Heaven’s Door: User preferences on digital cultural distribution|
|Author(s):||Joan-Josep Vallbé, Balázs Bodó, João P. Quintais, Christian W. Handke|
|Citation:||Vallbé, J., Bodó, B., Quintais, J.P. & Handke, C.W. (2019) Knocking on Heaven’s Door: User preferences on digital cultural distribution. Internet Policy Review, 8(2)|
|Key Related Studies:|
|About the Data|
|Data Description:||Data were obtained through two surveys of Dutch citizens, totalling 4,968 complete responses. The first survey examined respondents’ media consumption habits; the second examined their preferences for CSS alternatives.|
|Data Type:||Primary data|
|Secondary Data Sources:|
|Data Collection Methods:|
|Data Analysis Methods:|
|Cross Country Study?:||No|
|Government or policy study?:||No|
|Time Period(s) of Collection:||
“This paper explores the social, demographic and attitudinal basis of consumer support of a Copyright Compensation System (CCS), which, for a small monthly fee would legalise currently infringing online social practices such as private copying from illegal sources and online sharing of copyrighted works. We do this by first identifying how different online and offline, legal and illegal, free and paying content acquisition channels are used in the media market using a cluster-based classification of respondents. Second, we assess the effect of cultural consumption on the support for a shift from the status quo towards alternative, CCS-based forms of digital cultural content distribution. Finally, we link these two analyses to identify the factors that drive the dynamics of change in digital cultural consumption habits. Our study shows significant support to a CCS compared to the status quo by both occasional and frequent buyers of cultural goods, despite the widespread adoption of legal free and paying online services by consumers. The nature of these preferences are also explored with the inclusion of consumer preference intensities regarding certain CCS attributes. Our results have relevant policy implications, for they outline CCS as a reform option. In particular, they point evidence-based copyright reform away from its current direction in the EU of stronger enforcement measures, additional exclusive rights, and increased liability and duties of care for online platforms. This work shows that CCS may be an apt policy tool to hinder piracy and potentially increase right holder revenues, while respecting fundamental rights and promoting technological development.”
Main Results of the Study
The study identifies various types of consumers: occasional (low-intensity consumption), bookworms (book-only/nearly book-only consumption), digital consumers (digital-only consumption) omnivores (consumers of both digital and physical material) and; pirates (consumption via illegal sources). Age and education are the biggest determinants of consumption habits with older and less educated people consuming very little (and falling into the categories of e.g. occasional and bookworms).
Pirates and digital consumers are more willing to change their consumption habits, and most likely to support the rights provided by a CSS system. The study suggests that this demonstrates a dissatisfaction with status quo, even though e.g. pirates are depicted as benefitting from the current system as “free riders”. Despite new distribution channels (e.g. streaming platforms) these consumers continue to demonstrate a preference for increased user rights (access) and options as to types of content (more than just music). Both also demonstrate a similar willingness to pay, with pirates willing to pay on average 9.87 euros per month and digital consumers 11.5 euros. As these figures largely correspond to the subscription fees for music and TV services used by digital consumers, the study notes that occasional consumers are less likely to support a CSS system as it does not bring the same cost-saving benefits.
Policy Implications as Stated By Author
The study suggests that a CSS system (combining statutory licensing, compensated exceptions and collective rights management) is the preferred reform option for consumers. The study also suggests improvement in private ordering through pricing, quality and availability of content may assist in maximising rights revenues and lowering piracy.