Which products are typically affected?
As regards copyright piracy, the most affected industry sector is computer software. The Business Software Alliance (BSA) has identified in its 2004 Piracy Study a world piracy rate - calculated as the number of pirated software units divided by the total number of units put into use - of 36 percent in 2003. Due to a change in study methodology and coverage, these figures cannot be directly compared with the piracy rates of the previous BSA annual studies, however, based on the information of its analysts, BSA assumes that in 2003 software piracy increased.
The Music industry is the second most heavily affected business sector. According to the estimates of the International Federation of Phonographic Industry (IFPI), global sales of pirate CDs have more than doubled between 1999 and 2002, from 510 million to 1.1 billion units, with an increase of 14% in 2002. Global sales rates of pirated recordings - calculated on the basis of pirate prices - are estimated at 4.6 billion US$. On the other hand, cooperation between right holders and enforcement authorities has produced results. In its 2003 piracy report, IFPI estimates that in 2002, 50 million CDs have been seized by enforcement authorities worldwide, with the assistance of the recording industrys anti-piracy teams. This represents a four-fold increase over the previous year.
Increasingly, the film industry is affected by optical disc piracy. Pirate optical discs, such as Laser Discs (LD), Video Compact Discs (VCD) and Digital Versatile Discs (DVD), are inexpensive to manufacture and easy to distribute. In addition, online piracy by means of downloadable media or streaming media is a growing trend. The Hollywood-based Motion Pictures Association of America (MPA) estimates that approximately 600,000 copies of movies are downloaded daily.
Another industry strongly affected by piracy is the electronic toy industry, which produces popular products such as video games. This industry has seen a dramatic increase in illegal copying and selling of their products over the past years.
Counterfeiting impacts an even wider spectrum of industry sectors. From luxury goods, the traditional victim of counterfeiting, to watches, fashion and sportswear, perfumes, cosmetics, toys, aircraft and automobile components, foodstuff and pharmaceuticals, almost all value-added brands are copied and sold as original products. Recent figures show that products such as medicaments and foodstuff figure alarmingly prominently among the goods seized, which increasingly raises concerns for consumer safety. For example, as regards counterfeit medicines, the World Health Organization (WHO) in its November 2003 fact sheets makes reference to statistics according to which counterfeits make up more than 10% of the global medicines market and are present in both industrialized and developing countries.