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Netflix and Spotify combat piracy, by just existing

Who'd have though it? If we'd all been drinking the media lobbyist cool-aid for the past decade, we'd have been under the belief that the only way to tackle piracy, was to crush individual uploaders and downloaders under massive fines and scare them into never touching a PC again, when in-fact, offering decent alternatives to piracy was a much more effective treatment.

According to a new survey performed by Norwegian research firm, IPSOS MMI, legal media consumption services like Netflix and Spotify have had a huge impact on piracy levels, cutting them by over 80 per cent in some instances. The report cites 2008 music download figures, where over 1.2 billion songs were downloaded in Norway. Comparatively, in 2012, only 210 million were found to have been pirated.

In the same way, film and TV downloads have been slashed in half, with 125 and 135 million respectively being pirated in 2008, compared with just 65 and 55 million in 2012.

Two services changing online viewing habits more than legal action ever has

These drops are attributed mostly to legal services being introduced and finding much larger user numbers over the past few years. Of those quizzed as part of the report, nearly half of them were found use legal music streaming services on a regular basis. In-fact, out of all social tools available to Norwegians, Spotify came in second only to Facebook, in a separate survey. This meant it beat out other huge services like Twitter and LinkedIn.

“When you have a good legitimate offer, the people will use it,” said Olav Torvund, former law professor at the University of Oslo, via Telegraph.

“There is no excuse for illegal copying, but when you get an offer that does not cost too much and is easy to use, it is less interesting to download illegally.”

Kitguru Says: Glad to see these services are being given their dues. They're still far from perfect, but we're really, finally, moving into a digital world that gives consumers a decent option of content to watch, when they want, something pirates have enjoyed for over a decade now.

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