And now there is a study that proves it.
From InfoJustice: “The Copy Culture survey was sponsored by The American Assembly, with support from a research award from Google. The content of the survey and its findings are solely the responsibility of the researchers. The U.S. survey was conducted by Princeton Survey Research Associates International. The results are based on interviews on landline and cellular telephones conducted in English with 2,303 adults age 18 or older living in the continental United States from August 1-31, 2011. For results based on the entire sample, the margin of error is plus or minus 2 percentage points.”
Some preliminary findings:
- ‘Piracy’ is common. Some 46% of adults have bought, copied, or downloaded unauthorized music, TV shows or movies.* These practices correlate strongly with youth and moderately with higher incomes. Among 18-29 year olds, 70% have acquired music or video files this way.
- Copyright infringement among family and friends is widely accepted (75% and 56%, respectively, for music; 70% and 54% for film). In contrast, activities that imply dissemination of copyrighted goods to larger networks receive very low levels of support.
- Only a slim majority of Americans (52%) support penalties for downloading copyrighted music and movies—and limit this support to warnings and fines. Other penalties, such as bandwidth throttling and disconnection, receive much lower levels of support.
- Solid majorities of American Internet users oppose copyright enforcement when it is perceived to intrude on personal rights and freedoms. 69% oppose monitoring of their Internet activity for the purposes of enforcement. 57% oppose blocking or filtering if those measures also block some legal content or activity.
For more on the findings, read the full report here.