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Study: Legal movie sales and rentals increased after Megaupload was shut down

Written by Andre Yoskowitz (Google+) @ 09 Mar 2013 22:00 User comments (15)

Study: Legal movie sales and rentals increased after Megaupload was shut down According to a research survey posted earlier this week, legal movie sales increased after cyberlocker Megaupload was shuttered last year.
Wellesley College assistant professor of economics Brett Danaher and Carnegie Mellon University professor of information technology and marketing Michael D. Smith say the closure led to increased digital sales and rentals for two major movie studios in the U.S. and in 12 other countries.

"We conclude that shutting down Megaupload and Megavideo caused some customers to shift from cyberlocker-based piracy to purchasing or renting through legal digital channels," the researchers said (via WSJ).

Online revenue was 6-10 percent higher than it would have been had the sites not been closed, concluded the research. To complete the research, the researchers used data "provided by the two studios on digital transactions in the months following the January 2012 closing of Megaupload."

After the shut down, "weekly digital sales of movies from the two studios to grow by between 10,500 and 15,300 units from what would otherwise have been expected. Rentals grew between 13,700 and 24,000 units a week."

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15 user comments

19.3.2013 22:27

Quote:
After the shut down, "weekly digital sales of movies from the two studios to grow by between 10,500 and 15,300 units from what would otherwise have been expected. Rentals grew between 13,700 and 24,000 units a week."
Sounds to me like the headline should read: "Professor's guess for digital video sales and rentals shy by several thousand units". Very little information is given other than that.

29.3.2013 23:26

Not to mention it may not be due to fact it was shut down, but it could be due to the fact that better content people were more willing to spend their $ on was released.

39.3.2013 23:45

These bozos and their studies. They are good for a laugh though.

410.3.2013 0:16

One of the biggest waste on money on "research"...nothing but a bunch of bull crap propaganda. Anyone that used online sharing services knows how scarce were MU links for the new releases, months or even year(s) before closing down. Spend money and make quality stuff,at reasonable prices, and people will buy it.

510.3.2013 1:13

This is from The Wallstreet Journal. Unfortunately you need to pay a subscription fee to read it.

610.3.2013 3:42

Originally posted by cyprusrom:
One of the biggest waste on money on "research"...nothing but a bunch of bull crap propaganda. Anyone that used online sharing services knows how scarce were MU links for the new releases, months or even year(s) before closing down. Spend money and make quality stuff,at reasonable prices, and people will buy it.
Yep, these "studies" sponsored by the MPAA and RIAA etc. are nothing more than a tool for censorship of the internet. The sad fact is it is working and they will eventually sneak enough under the table deals in to get what they want.
This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 10 Mar 2013 @ 3:47

710.3.2013 5:54

Unless you just have to read the journal the same story is available via RSS feed or other source

Jeff

810.3.2013 12:45

So they are saying that their sales have never fluctuate by 6% at any other time?

910.3.2013 14:59

That's what they're (falsely) trying to imply, Bran3404.

1011.3.2013 12:34

Let's just see how things played out over the following 6mths, hmmm?

Who wants to bet general market conditions are the cause?

In this depressed economy people tend to stay at home so home entertainment can see some growth and it is a small boost, I'd call these numbers very small in the context of the US market.

..and that within a month or 2 people found other means to download?

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 11 Mar 2013 @ 12:36

1111.3.2013 18:34

I haven't rented a movie or bought since megaupload was closed on top of that most movies are garbage and a waste of time. There's only a few good movies out there. LOL

1211.3.2013 19:24
JohnAppleseed
Unverified new user

Actually, the study is available online so you can read it if you want. It's linked in the WSJ article.

You guys are actually completely wrong about what it says. It doesnt say sales rose by 6-10% and that the authors are just assuming that this was due to the shutdown. Even in their abstract the authors clearly state that that would be a bad approach.

What they did with the data was much more sophisticated. Its not 100% conclusive proof, but if you actually understand what they found its reasonably convincing. They actually used a strategy to produce the best possible estimate of how sales would have changed if not for the shutdown (accounting for things like seasonality, availability of content, release schedules, etc..).

Give it a look and actually try to understand it with an open mind. Then, if you dont buy it, give a compelling reason why.

The WSJ article also says that the study was not funded in any way - it seems it was just two university professors doing what they do for a living.. research.

1311.3.2013 22:07

Originally posted by JohnAppleseed:
Give it a look and actually try to understand it with an open mind. Then, if you dont buy it, give a compelling reason why.
Biased information sources. The study was short, and could easily be swayed by ubiquitous market fluctuations. It was based on guesses of what would happen, which are practically meaningless in an ever-changing marketplace and economy full of innumerable variables.

Quote:
The WSJ article also says that the study was not funded in any way - it seems it was just two university professors doing what they do for a living.. research.
You left out the part where they said that, while the study wasn't funded by the MPAA, data provided by the MPAA was used in the study. Fruit of the poisonous tree. I'm also curious how often these professors produce guesses of this magnitude that are not off by 6-10%, relative to those that are within or beyond that error margin.
This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 11 Mar 2013 @ 22:13

1412.3.2013 15:46

Originally posted by Jeffrey_P:
Unless you just have to read the journal the same story is available via RSS feed or other source

Jeff
Every site I've read sources it to The Wallstreet Journal... Just saying.

1515.3.2013 12:19

"study wasn't funded by the MPAA, data provided by the MPAA was used in the study"

Oh, now I get it.

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