Study finds computer users overwhelmingly value legal software; yet many lack awareness of which software is legal and which is not
TORONTO, May 12 /CNW/ - The commercial value of unlicensed software
installed on personal computers in Canada reached US$1.066 billion in
2010 as 28 per cent of software deployed on PCs during the year was
pirated. These are among the findings of the Business Software Alliance
(BSA) 2010 Global Software Piracy Study, which evaluates the state of software piracy around the world.
"At 28 per cent, Canada's piracy rate is at an all time low, dropping
six percentage points since 2006," said Michael Murphy, Chairman of the
BSA Canada Committee. "While these findings show that progress has been
made in reducing the software piracy rate in Canada, there is still
more work to be done on behalf of Canadian businesses and consumers
alike. The further we reduce software piracy, the better it will be for
the Canadian economy."
This is the eighth study of global software piracy to be conducted by
BSA in partnership with IDC, the IT industry's leading market research
and forecasting firm, using a methodology that incorporates 182
discrete data inputs for 116 countries and regions around the world.
This year's study also includes a new dimension: a public-opinion
survey of PC users on key social attitudes and behaviors related to
software piracy, conducted by Ipsos Public Affairs.
The opinion survey found strong support for intellectual property rights
in Canada, with 68 per cent of respondents saying we should reward
inventors for their creations to promote more technology advances.
Strikingly, the global survey found that support for intellectual
property rights was strongest in markets with high piracy rates.
The survey also found widespread recognition among Canadians that
licensed software is better than pirated software when it comes to
technical support (92 per cent), security (83 per cent) and reliability
(81 per cent).
However, across the globe the survey found that many PC users lack a
clear understanding of whether common ways of acquiring software, such
as buying a single program license for multiple computers or
downloading a program from peer-to-peer network, are likely to be legal
or illegal. In Canada, a majority of respondents said that
peer-to-peer, lending software and street markets are illegal, but 59
per cent believe that auction sites provide legal software. Almost
two-thirds said installing multiple copies at home is legal.
"Clearly, there is a strong appreciation for the value delivered by
legal software," said Robert Holleyman, BSA president and CEO. "The
results reinforce the need to educate users that software downloaded
from P2P networks is often illegal, and installing software purchased
for one computer on multiple home or office PCs is piracy."
Additional findings from the study include:
The commercial value of stolen software in Canada totalled US$1.066
billion. Globally, the value of software theft grew to a record $59
billion — nearly double that when the study began in 2003.
Half of the 116 geographies studied in 2010 had piracy rates of 62 per
cent or higher, with the global average piracy rate at 42 per cent.
Emerging economies have become a driving force behind PC software
piracy. Piracy rates in the developing world are 2.5 times higher than
those in the developed world, and the commercial value of pirated
software ($31.9 billion) accounts for more than half of the world
The most cited advantages of licensed software globally are access to
technical assistance (88 per cent) and protection from hackers and
malware (81 per cent).
Among the common ways people in engage in piracy is to buy a single copy
of software and install it on multiple computers.
Strong majorities of PC users around the world believe intellectual
property rights and protections produce tangible economic benefits: 59
per cent globally say IP rights benefit local economies, while 61 per
cent globally say IP rights create jobs.
"Today's study shows that while piracy continues to threaten the global
economy, people clearly understand and appreciate the value of
intellectual property, especially its role in driving economic growth,"
said Holleyman. "Software theft continues to stifle IT innovation, job
creation, and economic growth around the world. This report clearly
shows the importance of educating businesses, government officials, and
end users about the risks of software theft — and what they can do to
About the Study
The 2010 BSA Global Software Piracy Study covers piracy of all software
that runs on PCs, including desktops, laptops, and ultra-portables,
including netbooks. This includes operating systems, systems software,
such as databases and security packages, and applications software,
with legitimate free software and open source software covered by the
scope of the study.
New this year, BSA retained Ipsos Public Affairs to survey more than
15,000 business and consumer PC users in order to provide more insight
into key social attitudes and behaviors related to intellectual
property and the use of licensed versus unlicensed software. The
surveys were conducted, online or in-person, in 32 markets that make up
a globally representative sample of geographies, levels of IT
sophistication, and cultural diversity.
For more details on the methodology and a copy of the complete study,
The Business Software Alliance (www.bsa.org) is the foremost organization dedicated to promoting a safe and legal
digital world. BSA is the voice of the world's commercial software
industry and its hardware partners before governments and in the
international marketplace. Its members represent one of the fastest
growing industries in the world. BSA programs foster technology
innovation through education and policy initiatives that promote
copyright protection, cyber security, trade and e-commerce. BSA
members include Adobe, Apple, Autodesk, Bentley Systems, CNC
Software/Mastercam, Corel, CyberLink, Dassault Systèmes SolidWorks
Corporation, Embarcadero, McAfee, Microsoft, Minitab, PTC, Quark, Quest
Software, Rosetta Stone, Siemens, Sybase, Symantec, and The MathWorks.
For more information about IDC, visit www.idc.com
For more information about Ipsos Public Affairs, visit www.ipsos.com
SOURCE Business Software Alliance
For further information:
Hill & Knowlton Canada
Hill & Knowlton Canada