One of the first numbers that comes under scrutiny is a claim that 31% of the people in the surveyed area (Kansas City) were already pirating content. This is an interesting number as I am not sure how many people would actually admit to illegally sharing copyrighted material to a stranger. They might admit to sharing music or movies, but that is an ambiguous statement when you think about it. As we have mentioned more than once, the framing of a question can determine the outcome of the survey and this one appears to be aimed at Google… well just because.
Moving on after the first magical number we come to another ambiguous answer (we do not have the full question). This one claims that of the remaining 69% of Kansas City Residents 26% of them will become pirates after they get Google Fiber. The answer would seem to point to a very targeted question and one that we have to wonder about again. Would any of you actually answer a question like that? With the way that Hollywood is throwing multi-million dollar lawsuits around at everyone who would really give ay answer? However, let’s put that one aside for a minute and focus on what Hollywood thinks this number means. They claim that Google Fiber all on its own has the potential to add another $508 Million in lost revenue to piracy bringing the total per year losses to $2,248 Million.
Here we see Hollywood break out more imaginary numbers that have been debunked in the past. Not all pirated items equal a sale and about 33% of pirated items actually end up in a sale (according to multiple research efforts) so that number is significantly lower even if we used the inflated cost estimates that are typically used by Hollywood. Of course this is meant as Bad PR for Google in general and is in keeping with Project Goliath that was all over the news recently. The Copyright gang is looking to make as make direct connects between Google and the boogeyman of piracy as they can. This one is pretty lame to most consumers or anyone with any form of intelligence, but it might actually fly with the room temp IQ gang that writes US laws.
Neither Hollywood, nor US law makers will take a look at the opportunities that faster and unrestricted internet can offer. Even the skewed report showed that faster and more reliable internet (leaving Google fiber out) would increase streaming and rentals. This is a revenue option for Hollywood, but it is not enough of the pie so it is beneath their notice. Make no mistake, Hollywood sees Google as their biggest threat to getting their way about Piracy. They know that Google was able to rally a large support base and stop SOPA (and PIPA) before. They have to remove Google as a threat to their plans to bring this type of control back to the table. We expect to see more survey’s and news like this that try to put Google as a leading cause of piracy in the near future and while these might sound rather stupid to most, to many in congress…. They make a whole lot of sense even before the lobby money changes hands…
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