Saturday

23rd Mar 2019

Focus

Survey reveals most software pirates are young and male

Software pirates are most likely to be young men according to a survey carried out by software industry lobby group the Business Software Alliance (BSA).

The BSA study of nearly 15,000 computer users, published on Tuesday (15 May), also revealed that, at 48 percent, nearly half of European computer users admit to downloading pirated or unlicensed software.

Read and decide

Join EUobserver today

Support quality EU news

Get instant access to all articles — and 18 year's of archives. 30 days free trial.

... or join as a group

  • Nealy 50 percent of computer users admit to downloading pirate software, according to new research (Photo: European Commission)

The piracy rates are particularly high in Eastern Europe, with Romania and Bulgaria recording piracy rates of 64 percent and 63 percent in 2011, while Latvia, Lithuania and Poland all have piracy rates over 50 percent.

Figures published last December by Eurostat indicated that over 50 percent of Romanian and Bulgarian citizens had never used the Internet, while a report on international cyber-security by the Brussels-based think-tank Security and Defence Agenda in February, claimed that countries in eastern and southern Europe had the least sophisticated software security systems.

The BSA estimates that PC software piracy in the EU was worth €10.4 billion of lost revenue in 2011, accounting for roughly 25 percent of the worldwide commercial loss of €45.6 billion. In response, it demanded tougher laws on intellectual property theft including specialised training for law enforcement authorities.

The BSA's director of government affairs, Thomas Boué claimed that "the EU's current damages rules provide an incentive to infringe and it is clear that these rules need to be revised" adding that the EU needed to "ensure that the remedies for IPR (intellectual property rights) infringement act as a deterrent."

The European Commission is expected to propose legislation to revise its eight-year old directive on intellectual property rights before the July recess, although it has delayed publication of new rules on collective copyright in the face of rising public controversy about intellectual property laws.

The study comes as policy makers in Europe and the US are grappling with a series of publicly divisive anti-piracy laws.

While the US Congress passed the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA) in April, aimed at increasing the rights of internet service providers and social network sites to monitor and pass on personal data, the Obama administration has promised to shoot it down if it includes any references to intellectual property theft.

The White House also blocked the proposed Stop Online Piracy Act (Sopa) in January.

Meanwhile, the European Parliament is set to reject the international anti-piracy treaty Acta this summer following a well-publicised public campaign against the agreement reached by the European Commission and other countries including the US and Japan.

An anti-Acta petition organised by internet campaign group Avaaz is due to be discussed by the Parliament's Petitions committee after it attracted 2.4 million signatures.

Germany leads EU countries on cloud computing

Five EU countries rank among the world’s top ten for policies that promote cloud computing, according to a study published on Wednesday by an ICT body representing Microsoft and other international software giants.

News in Brief

  1. EU leaders at summit demand more effort on disinformation
  2. Report: Corbyn to meet May on Monday for Brexit talks
  3. Petition against Brexit attracts 2.4m signatures
  4. Study: Brexit to cost EU citizens up to €40bn annually
  5. NGOs demand France halt Saudi arm sales
  6. Report: Germany against EU net-zero emissions target
  7. Former top EU official takes job at law firm
  8. Draft text of EU summit has Brexit extension until 22 May

Agenda

Copyright and (another) new Brexit vote This WEEK

The UK parliament will likely hold a third vote on the Brexit withdrawal deal next week, determining the UK's departure from the bloc. In the meantime, the controversial copyright reform will be on the EU parliament's agenda.

Magazine

All about the European Parliament elections 2019

EUobserver's new magazine is meant to help readers prepare for the European Parliament elections, no matter their level of knowledge. You can download and read the entire magazine now.

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. Nordic Council of MinistersNew campaign: spot, capture and share Traces of North
  2. Nordic Council of MinistersLeading Nordic candidates go head-to-head in EU election debate
  3. Nordic Council of MinistersNew Secretary General: Nordic co-operation must benefit everybody
  4. Platform for Peace and JusticeMEP Kati Piri: “Our red line on Turkey has been crossed”
  5. UNICEF2018 deadliest year yet for children in Syria as war enters 9th year
  6. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic commitment to driving global gender equality
  7. International Partnership for Human RightsMeet your defender: Rasul Jafarov leading human rights defender from Azerbaijan
  8. UNICEFUNICEF Hosts MEPs in Jordan Ahead of Brussels Conference on the Future of Syria
  9. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic talks on parental leave at the UN
  10. International Partnership for Human RightsTrial of Chechen prisoner of conscience and human rights activist Oyub Titiev continues.
  11. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic food policy inspires India to be a sustainable superpower
  12. Nordic Council of MinistersMilestone for Nordic-Baltic e-ID

Latest News

  1. Italy takes China's new Silk Road to the heart of Europe
  2. What EU leaders agreed on climate - and what they mean
  3. Copyright and (another) new Brexit vote This WEEK
  4. EU avoids Brexit crash, sets new date for 12 April
  5. Campaigning commissioners blur the lines
  6. Slovakia puts squeeze on free press ahead of election
  7. EPP suspends Orban's Fidesz party
  8. Macron is confusing rigidity with strength

Join EUobserver

Support quality EU news

Join us