The MPAA isn’t very good at math.

How else can you explain the fact that they’re revising a previous estimate they made about the percentage of college students who pirate movies?

In a 2005 study it commissioned, the Motion Picture Association of America claimed that 44 percent of the industry’s domestic losses came from illegal downloading of movies by college students, who often have access to high-bandwidth networks on campus.

The MPAA has used the study to pressure colleges to take tougher steps to prevent illegal file-sharing and to back legislation currently before the House of Representatives that would force them to do so.

But now the MPAA, which represents the U.S. motion picture industry, has told education groups a ‘‘human error’’ in that survey caused it to get the number wrong. It now blames college students for about 15 percent of revenue loss.

That’s a pretty significant difference in numbers, but that won’t stop the MPAA from continuing to push Congress to do something about those meddling kids!

The MPAA says that’s still significant, and justifies a major effort by colleges and universities to crack down on illegal file-sharing. But Mark Luker, vice president of campus IT group Educause, says it doesn’t account for the fact that more than 80 percent of college students live off campus and aren’t necessarily using college networks. He says 3 percent is a more reasonable estimate for the percentage of revenue that might be at stake on campus networks.

‘‘The 44 percent figure was used to show that if college campuses could somehow solve this problem on this campus, then it would make a tremendous difference in the business of the motion picture industry,’’ Luker said. The new figures prove ‘‘any solution on campus will have only a small impact on the industry itself.’‘

You can bet your sweet bippie that the MPAA won’t be giving up on it’s hopes for legislation anytime soon, though. I mean, look how successful the jacking up of fines for non-commercial infringement have been at curbing piracy? It’s been at least as successful as the RIAA’s attempt to sue it’s own customers into compliance. 

Link sent in by DOF.

1 thought on “The MPAA isn’t very good at math.

  1. Rather than force the MPAA to be competitive the US is looking to writing legislation to protect them. Okay… That logic worked great for Chrysler didn’t it?

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