European media stakeholders lost €3.21 Billion to streaming piracy in 2021

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The December 2022 report by AAPA, Europe’s Audiovisual Anti-Piracy Alliance, also estimated that seventeen milliion consumers between the ages of 16 and 74, representing 4.5% of the EU+UK population, used illicit IPTV services in 2021.  This was up from an estimated 3.6% of the population in 2018.

As a result, infringing ‘IPTV’ providers in Europe made €1.06 Billion in revenue in 2021.  About a third of these consumers were ages 16-24. In addition, the report estimates that governments lost significant revenue as well. Those who use illegal IPTV services spend €5.22 per month.

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But because social media platforms and apps also provide relatively easy unauthorised access to content, the report admits that the revenue earned by pirates and potential losses to the industry are greater than those estimated in the report. Unauthorised providers also profit from advertising and malware.

Users of Illicit IPTV in Europe between 2018 and 2021. Source: AAPA

Usage differs by country

The report includes tables of the percentages of populations by country who use illegal IPTV services, by share of population and by number of individuals – as an aggregate and by age groups.  In the Netherlands 8.2% of the population (more than a million) use illicit IPTV and also is high in Luxembourg (7.9%), Ireland (7.2%), Sweden (7.2%), Malta (7%), Denmark (6.8%), Finland (6.6%), the UK (6.6%), Cyprus (6.5%), Slovenia (6.2%), and Spain (6%).  The lowest rates of IPTV piracy were discovered in Romania (0.8%), Poland (1.5%), Bulgaria (1.7%), and Greece (1.7)

Piracy usage skews older in countries that include Slovenia, Slovakia, Luxembourg, Sweden, Latvia and Germany, and younger in Greece, Italy, Romania, France and Poland.

Revenue generated

Countries generating the highest revenue for piracy services are the UK, Germany, France and Spain.  The report includes estimates of illegal revenue generated, by country, by month and annually.

Download the report

Illicit IPTV in Europe, Economic Report, December 2022, by the Audiovisual Anti-Piracy Alliance, in collaboration with the Centre for Intellectual Property Policy and Management of Bournemouth University and Gobelin House SLU.

Why it matters

Much is said about the losses suffered by rights holders, but the estimated €1.06 Billion revenue to pirates is especially noteworthy.

The report combined three EU-level surveys to assess the share of population which streams unauthorised IPTV. First, the Eurostat Household survey (2020) provides the indicator of the overall share of population watching Internet streamed television. Second, EUIPO IP Perception study (2020) is applied as a source for the Member State level data on IPTV piracy. More specifically, the IP Perception survey defines the country level rates for unauthorised access to online content. These two indicators, despite arriving from three distinct surveys, provide reliable and comparable EU27+UK and country level metrics.

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