E-Book Piracy Costs Publishers $315 Million in Lost Sales

ebook piracy

Digimarc Corporation recently commissioned a Nielsen consumer survey on e-book piracy to better understand the nature of e-book piracy, how it impacts revenue, and what publishers can do to prevent it.

E-book piracy currently costs U.S. publishers $315 million each year in lost sales, and the Nielsen survey revealed that people who illegally download e-books are largely ordinary consumers, students and working professionals who access e-books from a wide range of digital sources, including online auction sites and via email from friends. The study highlighted the fact that 70% of illegal downloaders have either graduated from college or have a graduate degree. The most common age-range of an e-book pirate is between 30- and 44-years-old with a yearly household income between $60,000 and $99,000.

“When it comes to book piracy, you can’t prevent what you can’t predict. This is the challenge for publishers as they grapple with preventing illegal piracy,” said Devon Weston, director, market development, Digimarc Guardian. “Our new Nielsen data makes it clear these pirates don’t fit a typical criminal profile. They access digital content from a vast universe of web pages, social platforms and file sharing portals. Our aim is to break down the problem for publishers and help them develop an effective prevention strategy.”

Digimarc’s Guardian content protection service offers publishers an end-to-end digital piracy solution that discovers and verifies pirated content, de-lists the content on search engines and then reports actions-taken within a convenient customer portal. The solution helps enterprise-level rights holders, such as publishers, demonstrate their commitment to authors by providing detailed visibility into individual-work level piracy and protection, and by allowing the content creators to self-report suspected violations.

To download a copy of the study, please visit www.digimarc.com/resources/ebook-piracy-study.