Is the glass quarter full or quarter empty? Such is the question entertainment may care to ask itself following the publication of a new study commissioned by the Intellectual Property Awareness Foundation (IPAF) – a coalition of film and TV organisations – examining for the first time the attitudes and behaviour of Australians aged 12-17 to online film and television piracy. We write “quarter,” since apparently 76% of those petitioned claim not to pirate TV shows and films – which the IPAF point out contradicts the “everybody does it” mantra beloved of fair-weather felons the world over.
The incidence of piracy, however, does reportedly increase with age, with 17% of 12-13-year-olds “blossoming” into 31% of 16-17-year-olds – just like smoking, we suppose, and that sort of thing in general… on the subject of which, the IPAF are also keen to point out that, of those youngsters surveyed, more than a third recalled being thereby exposed to so-called “high risk advertisements” from gambling to pornography vendors, enhancing the picture of a sleazy Internet demi-monde (with piracy serving as a kind of “gateway”).
The study also collected many interesting facts and figures concerning the prevalent attitudes to piracy. Almost half young Australians, for example, “agreed that the Internet should be more regulated in order to prevent piracy” – while only 19% apparently disagreed.
Finally, it would indeed seem that (to paraphrase Philip Larkin) “Man hands on piracy to man,” with parental influence a “key factor in the behaviour of Australians aged 12-17” in this area as in so many others.
Over 600 respondents (aged 12-17) participated nationally in the research.