Sunday, 15 April 2012
Posted by A Whinger in France
The entertainment industry is again celebrating – a study into French anti-piracy legislation revealed that it appeared to be working. Regardless of the fact that the agency responsible for tracking the cases of copyright infringement, HADOPI, only sent its first cases to the courts last week, the research indicated that the appeal of piracy has reduced in the country since the law was passed.
According to the results of the study, digital sales that were previously slow to start in France, are now growing and music industry profits are starting to stabilize. The head of Universal Music France confirmed that French citizens started to realize that content creators should get paid for their work. The reason is that a lot of people have friends who have received a notification saying that they could be cut off, which creates a buzz and causes an educational effect.
HADOPI had sent over 800,000 notifications by email to alleged infringers by the end of last year. There were also 68,000 second warnings that had been issued through registered mail. Finally, as many as 165 cases reached the 3rd stage, where the courts are allowed to both impose fines of $1840 and to suspend broadband connections for a month.
The representatives of HADOPI believe that the relatively low number of 3rd-stage infringers proved that the system had succeeded. The pro-copyright outfit was given a budget of almost $15 million and employs 70 people. HADOPI claims that it has been watching a sharp decline in file-sharing in the country.
Another study, conducted by Wellesley College in Massachusetts and Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh revealed that HADOPI gave a boost to the Apple iTunes store. Although there was no evident proof that the boost was caused by anti-piracy law, the case for a link was demonstrated by the fact that sales of musical genres suffering from high levels of piracy, such as hip-hop, increased significantly more than the sales of low-piracy genres, such as Christian and classical music.
The estimations are that HADOPI gave Apple over $18 million per year worth of iTunes music sales in the country. The “three-strikes” law was brought in by the President, Nicolas Sarkozy, who believes that post-SOPA supporting such rules is creating opposition. His opponents claim that HADOPI infringes on civil rights and they are actually getting a lot of support.