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Study Finds Piracy Effect on International but not Domestic Box Office Sales

A recent study (yay for free downloads of scientific papers!) finds that piracy has a larger effect on box office revenues for Hollywood movies shown internationally than for those same movies shown domestically.

The researchers looked at data prior to and post the 2003 of BitTorrent, a popular method for pirating films and other media. They found that the longer the time period between the point where the film becomes available somewhere in the world and the point where it becomes available in the potential-pirate's backyard, the more likely it is to be pirated and lose money. Believe it or not, this is also true for television shows like Britain's Downton Abbey (first released in Britain and then some time later in the U.S.).

Long story short, people get excited about the product (movie or TV show) and will resort to less-than-legal means to get it if the studios take too long to bring it to them legally. Obviously there are still people out there who pirate films even when they are playing in their local cinema, but this study's results suggest that those people probably weren't ponying up the dough prior to BitTorrent anyway.

(via /Flim)

This post originally appeared on Stuff Smart People Like. Subscribe to the Podcast.

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