France: HADOPI 2020 Piracy research details impact on French media ecosystem

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The French anti-piracy agency HADOPI * released its “Study of the Economic Impact of Illicit Online Consumption of Audiovisual Content and Retransmission of Sporting Events” ** in December 2020.  Overall losses due to illicit consumption was estimated at €1.03 Billion for 2019.

The report also provides a useful reference for the overall media ecosystem and principal industry actors in France, including revenue trends and evolution of the French markets for cinema, video on demand, and video content sold on physical media.

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Among the report’s highlights:

  • About 11.8 million French Internet users consumed illegally-distributed audiovisual and sports content in 2019.  Increasingly, these users mix both illegal and legitimate consumption
  • Loss of pay TV revenue was estimated to be €260 Million,
  • Revenue losses from sale of physical media was estimated at €310M
  • TV production and publishing lost an estimated €211M and €188M respectively
  • The report estimated that illegal online consumption cost 2,650 jobs and €320M in tax revenues.

According to the report, streaming is the preferred method of consumption, at 52%.  Consumption via set-top boxes is only 8%.  21% of stolen content is accessed through illegal ‘IPTV’ services (Web portals using subscription models).

15% of pay TV programming accessed online in France is from pirates (Source: HADOPI)

Access the study (Published in French)

Why it matters

According to the report, the cost of rights associated with sports competitions increased by 58% between the 2015-16 and 2018-19 seasons; making the protection of rights all the more important.

As premium video platforms and services continue to proliferate, the fragmented availability of desirable content is likely to affect illegal consumption in France for years to come, just as it has around the world.

The study adds further substance to the body of knowledge about sports piracy, with a focus on cases and situations that have an impact in France.

* HADOPI, Haute Autorité pour la Diffusion des Œuvres et la Protection des droits d’auteur sur Internet, loosely translated, is the “High Authority for the Distribution of Works and the Protection of Copyright on the Internet.”

** Title of the report in French: “Etude de l’impact économique de la consommation illicite en ligne de contenus audiovisuels et de retransmissions d’événements sportifs”

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