Internet Piracy Has Increased by 36% Year Over Year, Are Streaming Sites to Blame?

The rise of streaming was supposed to bring about an end to the age of Internet piracy because of the fact that this is the sort of thing that could potentially end up offering a convenient way to access content from anywhere in the world. However, it turns out that the illegal downloading of various forms of media has actually increased by as much as 13% since 2019.

With all of that having been said and now out of the way, it is important to note that there were around 125 billion site visits recorded in 2019, and this decreased to 104 billion in 2020. In spite of the fact that this is the case, a report released by Muso revealed that the number of visits reached 145 billion in 2023, which is a 36% increase from 2020.

92% of this traffic is going towards movie and TV show downloads. 11% of this traffic came from the US, with India comprising another 11%. It bears mentioning that America has seen its proportion increase by 2 percentage points since 2018, whereas India has seen a staggering 7 point increase in that timespan with all things having been considered and taken into account.

Rise in Internet Piracy Despite Streaming Boom: Illegal downloads surge by 13% since 2019, posing challenges to the industry.

Streaming Saturation Blamed for Surge in Internet Piracy: Muso points to overwhelming choices and paywalls driving users towards illegal downloads.

This begs the question, why is internet traffic on the rise? According to Muso, it might have something or the other to do with the saturated streaming market. There was a time when Netflix was the only streaming service out there, but nowadays, practically every single media company has launched their own service.

The sheer number of choices overwhelms consumers, with many feeling like the majority of content is locked behind paywalls that are out of reach. Subscribing to each and every service can be a prohibitively costly endeavor, and piracy seems like an easier choice in that regard.

Streaming services might need to introduce bundled packages in the future, which ironically would make streaming just a refreshed version of broadcast and cable television. Either way, the rise in piracy shows that the time to change has arrived, and the industry might not be able to survive if it doesn’t adapt.

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