29 September 2006

And Now, by an Amazing Coincidence...

A little while back I pointed out at some length how flimsy was the logic found in a white paper that claimed Microsoft's Vista would bring "benefits" of $40 billion to six European countries - conveniently forgetting the fact that those $40 billion of "benefits" were actually a cost.

And now, what do we find, but a study from the US film industry that purports to show:

movie piracy causes a total lost output for U.S. industries of $20.5 billion per year, thwarts the creation of about 140,000 jobs and accounts for more than $800 million in lost tax revenue.

But fortunately, there's someone else on hand who isn't taken in by this Vista-like logic:

It's important to remember, however, that even though piracy prevents money from reaching the movie industry, those dollars probably stay in the economy, one intellectual property expert said.

"In other words, let's say people are forgoing paying for $6 billion in movies by downloading or consuming illegal goods but end up spending that $6 billion on iPods, computers and HDTV sets on which to watch the movies, which leads to $25 billion in job creation in the computer/software/consumer electronics field," Jason Shultz, staff lawyer at the Electronic Frontier Foundation, wrote in an e-mail.


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