How Megaupload scooped your bottom line

In the space of three short years, the piracy landscape has continued its relentless and ongoing march towards sucking in a mainstream user-group, in no small part due to 'cyberlockers'. In 2009, the buzzword was Rapidshare.com, in 2012, it's Megaupload.com. But in those period of maturing years for this newly emergent piracy arm, what does the data behind the numbers really tell us. In the light of the first big Cyberlocker lawsuit, Megaupload's dramatic bust in January 2012 and the subsequent talk of money laundering, mansions and private jets, has the imagination of both rights holders and the general public itself finally been distilled into understanding how web piracy continues to plunder the financial bottom line for media companies and content producers both large and small?

MUSO has taken a close look at the numbers behind the data to understand the developed market – and the numbers are staggering. For over half a decade, Peer to peer-style Torrents were the traffic kings, with over 85% of global pirated content being sourced from a number of torrent indexing sites or software applications. But, as the likes of Pirate Bay and Mininova established themselves as the top global traffic destinations, cyberlockers were growing in popularity Back to March 2012 there are over 300 various cyberlockers – and they all want a piece of the pie, with over 80% of all current cyberlocker employing some element of pay-per-click or pay-per-download reward model in place.

What does this mean to rights holders? Ultimately, any rewards program is designed to encourage their users to share links outside of their own social circle, and get people actively downloading those links. Subsequently, sharing the latest Katy Perry single, rather than say, a college thesis on the classical arts, is going to get those clicks happening much, much sooner. The file sharer gets paid, the cyberlocker gets paid through advertising eyeballs and the occasional user upgrading to a premium service, to download that Katy Perry single faster, in fact in this new distribution model, everyone gets paid apart from the rights holder themselves.

Studies by both IFPI and PRS in 2011 have added a lot of credence to the argument that online piracy is driven by convenience. The internet has spawned a ‘now’ culture and disposable media is the primary target – the illegal distribution model cyberlockers have based their business models around tap directly into this, and in many cases a simple google search for your content’s title will reveal illegal links now ranking higher than your legal destinations.

Effective online marketing should include a robust anti-piracy at its centre, ensuring the majority of illegal links are inactive when users are urged by your advertising to seek out your content. MUSO allows rights holders to maximize revenues, and freeing up your time from the piracy burden. However, effective anti-piracy

Founded in 2008, MUSO provides a platform of cost-effective online anti-piracy solutions used every day by over 1,000 rights-holders globally, from major media corporations to niche cutting-edge independent content producers. We help protect many of the world’s leading brands and premium content from online piracy, and operate from offices in London, UK and Burbank, Los Angeles.

To find out more about MUSO’s suite of piracy solutions, please visit Products.

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