A new research finding shows that "three strikes" and other graduated response warning regimes have had no effect on reducing movie piracy or increasing box office revenue.
A new study published by Dr. Jordi McKenzie of Sydney’s Macquarie University looked at over 8 years worth of piracy data, and the revenue stats for 6,083 unique films, and found that in countries with warning regimes, the introduction of these policies had no effect on piracy or the box office.
"This study has considered whether this has proven true in six countries’ experiences in the context of theatrical film revenues. No consistent evidence is found that supports increased theatrical box office revenues in any of the markets," the report concludes.
In fact, when looking solely at box office data in relation to the shutdown of Megaupload, described by the movie industry as a major piracy source, the data still failed to show any positive effects, and may have had a negative effect on revenue.
"Evaluating across all control countries, all treatment countries, and all countries together, no evidence of an increase in box office is observed after this date. In fact, as observed by Peukert et al.(2015), there is actually slight evidence of a decline in box office revenues after this date," the paper reads.
Trying to explain the conclusions, Dr. McKenzie theorizes that either the "catch rate" of these warning regimes was too low to have an effect on piracy, or that pirates simply found another source of piracy that wasn't being monitored by these regimes.
Meanwhile, torrent news website TorrentFreak has reported on the most pirated movies of 2016, and 'Deadpool' led the charge.
It was followed by 'Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice,' 'Captain America Civil War,' 'Star Wars The Force Awakens,' 'X-Men Apocalypse,' 'Warcraft,' 'Independence Day: Resurgence,' 'Suicide Squad,' 'Finding Dory,' and 'The Revenant'.
The list does not appear to correlate with actual box office takings from 2016. According to Box Office Mojo, the most popular movie of 2016 was 'Finding Dory', followed by 'Rogue One: A Star Wars Story', which has yet to have a good quality pirated version available to download. Films that made the box office top 10 and not the piracy top 10 include 'Rogue One: A Star Wars Story' (2nd place), 'The Secret Life of Pets' (4th), 'The Jungle Book' (5th), 'Zootopia' (7th), and 'Doctor Strange' (10th place).
As TorrentFreak surmises, the piracy list appears to be dominated by "geeky" films, which might be a reflection of the demographic of pirates. Also, some films in the box office top 10 are not yet available on DVD and Blu-ray, the release of which is usually when top quality pirated downloads become available.
[via TorrentFreak, Box Office Mojo]