A report analysing the facts about online piracy around the world shows that Europeans have the biggest piracy problem (45.72%). In Italy, Spain, Portugal, Germany, the United Kingdom and France, film piracy has risen sharply during the Covid19 pandemic. The introduction of stricter anti-piracy regulations may not solve the problem of illegal use of software. A report jointly produced by anti-piracy group ALPA, Mediametry and the National Film Board shows that after France tightened anti-piracy laws in 2017, the proportion of illegally streamed content increased by 15% and smartphone piracy by up to 50%. “The problem of illegal use of software usually results from the desire to save money, which in many cases involves sophisticated attitudes, and access to technological innovations such as access to culture guaranteed by the Constitution. This interpretation seems too broad. It seems that awareness-raising measures should be taken to illustrate the importance of IP in today`s world and the negative effects of lack of protection,” said the expert. Popularizing affordable streaming services can be a much more effective solution to the problem of piracy. Today, for dozens of zlotys, you get unlimited access to the vast library of movies on Netflix, music on Spotify, games on PS Plus or Xbox Live Gold, or storytelling audiobooks. Otherwise, piracy can have serious consequences for both the State and individuals. Piracy is the colloquial term for acts of copyright infringement, such as illegal copying or using other people`s works without their consent and without paying a reasonable fee. However, the activity in question is not considered piracy if it can be considered a legitimate use under the applicable regulations.
Now that the European Court of Justice has ruled on the Dutch case, the question remains how long Poland`s acceptance attitude towards downloading will last. Since the judgment, the legal situation in Poland has not changed. It is not surprising, according to the report, that one of the most important factors influencing the reduction in the scope of piracy use is the knowledge of the existence of a legal offer and the number of legal platforms with movies and TV channels. Every year, the different entertainment industries change rapidly, adapting the way content is produced, sold and distributed to new conditions. Paid VOD services, which provide access to legal content on demand for a one-time fee or as part of a subscription, are becoming an effective competition for pirated content. The vast majority of online piracy in the European Union is illegal streaming of content – in 2020, it accounted for more than 80% of EU citizens` illegal online activities. Other recognized types of piracy include illegal downloading of copyrighted works, stream extraction (the most commonly used method in the case of music, which involves making unauthorized copies of songs legally available via streaming) and torrenting, i.e. the simultaneous downloading and transfer of data within the peer-to-peer network. We face the most serious consequences when using the torrent network – the illegal distribution of the work that takes place during the download is a crime punishable by a fine, imprisonment or imprisonment of up to 2 years.
How do I stop software piracy? This is an important question, and the answer is complicated. Copyright. The results suggest that, given the aspect of accompanying mechanisms, we should be cautious when interpreting piracy as homogeneous and common among young people. From the point of view of educational practice, the data presented show that there is still a need to strengthen digital literacy with regard to legal aspects. Torrents are illegal because you download data to share without a proper license. “Black Mirror” and other popular series can be easily streamed – just watch them in streaming, as it is legal (personal use allowed or “dozwolony użytek osobisty” in Polish). Please note that it is illegal to download software if you do not have a license to do so (there is no “personal use” clause). Before the EU Court of Justice ruling, the Dutch legal system allowed users to download copyrighted material for their own use. This meant that it was legal to access movies, music, and e-books wherever they wanted, whether it was a legal or pirate source, without fear of prosecution.
Therefore, it seems that Poland turns to illegal sources only as a last resort. We are already used to the fact that we can access any content literally on demand, at any time of the day or night. First of all, however, we check if the selected video, series or music is available on the platform to which we subscribe. Only if we cannot find them there, we will opt for pirated content. Another emerging method of digital piracy is account sharing. Account sharing or credential sharing occurs when a person shares their personally identifiable information with third parties. In most cases, this is not illegal, but if the credentials are resold, it goes against the terms and conditions of most service providers. This hacking method has become popular with the boom of online streaming platforms and is extremely harmful to subscription-based businesses.
It is possible that this factor is responsible for the surprisingly low hacking statistics in Poland compared to other EU countries.