Italy: Piracy after lockdown dips below pre-pandemic levels

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Image source: FAPAV

A study conducted by IPSOS and released by the Italian anti-piracy agency FAPAV in July shows that piracy in 2021 has returned to levels that are slightly lower than the 2019 rate, after rising dramatically in 2020 due to COVID lockdown.  FAPAV is the Federation for the Protection of Audiovisual and Multimedia Content.

According to a synopsis published by Smartworld (Italy):

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  • 38% : the overall incidence of piracy among Italians aged 15 or over in the last 12 months vs 40% of the first lockdown in 2020 and 37% in 2019.
  • 57 million : the overall estimate of the acts of piracy of an average post-lockdown two-month period vs the 243 million of the lockdown and the 69 million of an average two-month period in 2019.
  • 25% : the incidence of movie piracy (it was 31% in 2019).
  • 20% : the incidence of series / fiction piracy (it was 23% in 2019).
  • 21% : the incidence of television piracy (it was 17% in 2019).
  • 14% : the incidence of live sports piracy after the forced stop during the lockdown (vs 10% in 2019).
  • 30% : the estimate of new subscribers to legal on-demand platforms in the last 12 months.
  • 21% : the incidence of illicit IPTV users for films, series / fiction, TV programs and live sporting events at least once in the last 12 months vs 19% of the lockdown and 10% in 2019.

“After very strong growth in illicit acts of audiovisual piracy detected during last year’s lockdown, the situation tends to return to pre-pandemic levels,” declared Nando Pagnoncelli, President of Ipsos Italia.

“The effective collaboration between all who operate on the web in various capacities … for those who invest in the production and distribution of audiovisual content, can no longer be postponed,” said Federico Bagnoli Rossi , General Secretary of FAPAV.  This will help ensure that that piracy continues to decline below its pre-pandemic levels.

Read further details from Smartworld (Mondadori Media S.p.A)

Read the FAPAV / IPSOS study

(Both are auto-translated from Italian by Google Translate)

Why it matters

Over the past year, there has been much fear that changes in media and entertainment consumption and media piracy brought on by the COVID pandemic would become permanent.  In fact, some have but many have not.  FAPAV characterizes 2020’s increase in piracy to be an anomaly.

In a similar vein, albeit unrelated, the release of movies online during COVID cannibalized theatrical revenues and boosted piracy; which has prompted studios to consider returning to theatrical first, followed by online.

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