A’rrr You A Pirate?

A year ago I wrote about how research is generally flawed. I think this latest attempt to curb pirating is a good example of an outcome based on such research…



One third of Australians are accidental pirates. Wait, what!?

Upon questioning that incredible stat, I was pointed to this research from which the campaign is based.

This research would indicate 53% of Australians are pirates but roughly 60% of those do not consider themselves pirates (34% of all Australians in total). Fair enough.

But to say this 34% of people accidental pirates is a big stretch. They’re not accidentally breaking the law without realising it, they just don’t think they’re pirates. That’s a big difference, and not a conclusion I’d jump to to base a campaign around.

My second issue is how I image this research was conducted…

Have you ever downloaded a song illegally, burnt a DVD from the video store etc.?


Do you consider yourself a pirate?


Let’s assume I tick Yes to the first box. Now here’s just a few things that run through my head for the second question…

1) How do you define “pirate”?
2) No, I only watch movies I download, not sell them onto people.
3) Yes, but everyone’s a pirate these days, only losers watch shows on television.
4) No, pirating is naughty and I’m not a bad person.
5) Okay I know I’m a bad person, but I don’t want to admit that to this survey.
6) No, it’s not my fault, it’s the industry’s fault, right?
8) I bet if I tick No I can collect my money for doing this survey sooner anyway.

And then I’m just simply meant to tick a Yes or a No box?

People know what they’re doing is wrong. And your survey, and your campaign, isn’t enough to convince me the concept of accidental piracy is anything but ridiculous and a waste of money.

Go back to guilting me. I’ve stopped downloading Australian content because of it. Although that may be because Australia doesn’t produce much worth downloading.

Also, what’s with the dude playing different characters? So don’t get that.

End rant.

  • grace gordon
    Posted at August 31, 2010 12:50pm, 31 August Reply

    True and hilarious points!

  • Anonymous
    Posted at September 8, 2010 11:49pm, 08 September Reply

    Are you fucking serious?

    Wow, you don't even understand the most simple humour imaginable.

    Don't go hating on research because you don't 'get' it. They probably even lifted that Stat from ABS, it wouldn't have moved across into the research itself.

    It's interesting that they've uncovered this light, and has fed into strategy. They're taking the piss out of people that do partake in obvious Pirating whilst not admitting to it (when it has become so ingrained in behaviour that this is normally the case). They're taking the piss towards the people that take the piss. It is about normalisation here.

    End rant.

  • Luci Temple
    Posted at September 16, 2010 8:48pm, 16 September Reply

    53% of people download or share content in breach of copyright laws… Hmmm, that sounds like a majority to me – so shouldn't we be calling for legislative change?

    BTW @anonymous, the stats are based on their own research http://www.ipawareness.com.au/Facts/

    The problem with all "anti-piracy" efforts to date is that they don't get into the head of the target audience (53% of Australians!) and actually address the underlying issues that motivate them to download.
    The problem with this ad is that it looks like a poor ripoff of (sorry, 'inspired by')Chris Lilly's work.

    Plus the "accidental pirate" line is likely to become the butt of jokes in the hands of the target audience – laughing at the cause rather than with them.

    On the plus side, this strategy is far preferable to the previous work – burning movie posters, equating it to real crime, etc.

    And the campaign isn't just an ad, has some other online stuff going on http://www.ipawareness.com.au/Home/.

  • The Racing Secrets
    Posted at September 20, 2010 4:48pm, 20 September Reply

    Haha love your first line.

    Personally I have not brought a CD since I was 10 years old and I'm 22 now! Napster got me off to a good start then there was Kazaa and now my good friend Limewire.

    My belief is, is that it is strange we have this notion that toilet clearners be paid low and this idea that musicans should be paid high. I guess it is the musicans who are the total package and who can put on a good live show are the ones who should make the big ka ching ching.

  • charleswinston
    Posted at November 7, 2010 3:36pm, 07 November Reply

    posting as anonymous removes any credibility you think you may have.

    love it Zac

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