Sci-Tech

The illegal download costs 1 billion euros

For the first time, the High Authority for the Dissemination of Works and the Protection of Internet Rights (Hadopi) carried out a study quantifying illegal access to audiovisual and sports content – downloading, streaming. The study is based on a panel of 2,500 people interviewed by the consulting firm PMP and on data from Médiamétrie.

The resulting deficit would amount to 1.03 billion euros. The physical turnover would therefore be missing 310 million euros turnover, and on the side of the subscriptions for payment channels 260 million euros would be lost. As a result, public finances are missing various taxes, including VAT, for a total of € 320 million. During the first detention in March 2020, 13.6 million French people illegally accessed audiovisual content: a record.

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Julien Taieb, the legal manager of the Professional Football League (LFP) and president of the Association for the Protection of Sports Programs, warns that “an effective law must be passed urgently”. A law has been in preparation for a year to combat this illegal access to audiovisual content. It was worn by MP Aurore Bergé and Minister of Culture Roselyne Bachelot and has been ready since spring, but has been suspended due to the health crisis. By and large, it envisions the creation of a public audiovisual holding company that will fight piracy. Second, this holding company will be responsible for merging the Superior Audiovisual Council (CSA) and Hadopi to create a new anti-piracy body: Arcom. After all, it should be the origin of the modernization of certain infrastructures such as DTT or DAB +. The law specifically targets sports content that regrets Nicolas Seydoux, president of the Association for the Fight against Audiovisual Piracy.

The bill attacks mirror sites, ie download link providers. Today, Hadopi laws mainly focus on pirates. The law provides that judges rely on the ordering of websites, which are then automatically sanctioned. The order would be valid for 12 months and then require a new judicial seizure. However, no trial would be required for one year. This point shows a vision where the digital space and the real environment do not benefit from the same treatment. For example, to ban a newspaper requires a judge’s decision to verify compliance with the law during the decision. Overriding the judge’s control embodies the previous censorship. Aurore Bergé believes that a vote in parliament is possible for the summer of 2021: “Everyone agrees on this text, except for rebellious France, there is agreement between the Assembly and the Senate and the reluctance of telecommunications operators has been dealt with,” she confides Les Échos on.

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