News in relation to piracy crackdown measures has been down the rounds a fair bit. In Australia, the Government is looking at a range of measures that range from cracking down on individuals to a graduated response scheme. Meanwhile the ACCC (which is a consumer advocacy group) believes that the government should do more to do away with the Australian Tax that leads to price discrimination.
Then you have the Expendables 3 leak way before it’s box office debut. And the results are in after its box office takings and they are not good. Is piracy to blame for these takings? One side of the debate will say yes while another will say no.
Then you have the Russian Government taking down sites that it deems breaks the laws without any due process and the majority of US studios taking to court the Russian version of Facebook for piracy.
I am doing the rounds of Eastern Europe at the moment and I can tell you first hand that piracy is king. Each street stall or shop deals with pirated goods. I walked into a CD shop and all of the CDs and DVDs were copies made from illegal downloads. I walk into any clothing shop and I am greeted with gear from Adidas, Nike, Puma or any other reputable product. And while the owner tells me they are the real deal you don’t have to be a scientist to work out that they are forgeries.
But in all of this piracy, 40,000 people turned up to watch a Serbian singer name Ceca in Ohrid on 1st August. In all of this piracy, Metallica constantly tours Eastern Europe, selling thousands upon thousands of concert tickets in areas where actual sales of recorded music is non-existent. Iron Maiden is another band that is king of Eastern Europe.
Then you notice that each house has cable TV and that a lot of the people don’t even pay for it. Yep, most of them are cord cutting into a legit box and running a cable into their apartment, unit or house. And while Game of Thrones and The Walking Dead are kings in English-speaking countries, they do not even rate a mention in Eastern Europe. They are just not part of the conversation.
Yet with all of this piracy going on in Eastern Europe it still hasn’t dented the people’s will to create new product. Movies, music and TV shows are still being made at a high rate. There are so many good and talented artists doing the rounds in Eastern Europe and they do it because they love to create and perform. The aspect of being rich and famous doesn’t even come into the conversation.