Report: 'Why pirate when you can stream?'

Want to cripple content piracy? Stream your video online instead. That's the conclusion of a new study from Global Web Index, which says content piracy isn't about having the content, it's about watching it as soon as possible. GWI -- the offspring of research consultancy Trendstream and Lightspeed Research -- contends that the increasing popularity of Hulu, YouTube and other online video hubs has increased content availability to the point where personal ownership is redundant, making users less inclined to steal content.

"If everything I want is available on demand, the concept of ownership is diminished," says Trendstream Managing Director Tom Smith. "This is not only a threat to traditional packaged sales of music, TV and film, it will also kill off piracy. Why pirate when you can stream?"

Smith also contends that streaming doesn't mean consumers won't pay for the content they want.

"When content is great and it can be accessed when and how people want, they will pay," he said. "Content providers should take the opportunity to get their content online in a relevant format and at a fair price. If they do that, people will no longer to seek illegal alternatives.

"In a world of instant information and content, media owners are missing out on millions of dollars of revenue by restricting content through time delays, regional staggering or by relying purely on traditional media delivery".

GWI says 64% of Internet users watch video clips and 31% watch full-length TV and video programming online.

For more:
- see this TechCrunch blog

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