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Title: Comparative Analysis of Software Piracy Determinants among Pakistani and Canadian University Students: Demographics, Ethical Attitudes and Socio-Economic Factors
Author: Arsalan Butt [Simon Fraser University]

MSc thesis

Year: 2006


Subject/Type: Piracy
Focus: Software
Country/Territory: Canada, Pakistan
Objective: To examine the effect of demographic and economic factors, cultural/ethical values and social norms on software piracy among students.
Sample: Graduate and undergraduate computer science/IT students in one Canadian university (196) and five Pakistani universities (339)
Methodology: Two voluntary, self-administered questionnaires with close-ended questions distributed during class or computer lab sessions (Pakistan) and on the Internet (Canada)

Main Findings

76% of the Canadian students surveyed download pirated software compared to 38% of Pakistani students. The lower percentage for Pakistani students is explained by the unavailability of higher Internet speed and bandwidth in Pakistan, meaning that pirated copies sold on the street (or copied from a peer) are cheaper than downloading them form the Internet.

More than 50% of the Pakistani respondents were not aware of the term "software piracy", and cultural factors/customs may make them unaware that their actions are unethical/illegal; therefore it is hard to conceptualize piracy in Pakistan (and other developing countries) as intentional behaviour. The author suggests selling academic versions of software at cheaper prices in both countries to reduce piracy.

[Date Added: Oct 22, 2008 ]