Video and Television Piracy: Ecosystem and Impact
An Industry Whitepaper
Due to the rise in popularity and prevalence of video and television piracy, a significant percentage of Internet users are accessing content in a manner that violates content licensing agreements.
The risk to communications service providers (CSPs) is enormous: continued adoption of unlicensed video and TV streaming services could lead to increased cord-cutting and create ‘cordnevers’, significantly impacting top-line revenue and overall profitability and—by extension—undermining the very business models that keep CSPs operating.
The modern reality is that CSPs are spending large sums to license, produce, and/or distribute exclusive content, but it’s easier than ever before for subscribers to get this content at lower cost than licensed alternatives.
A rich piracy ecosystem containing several different participants and revenue streams has emerged to deliver video on demand, catch-up, and live video use cases. In North America alone, we estimate that this ecosystem generates revenues in excess of one billion dollars ($1 billion USD).
For CSPs to make informed decisions about business strategy, it’s important to investigate and to quantify video and television piracy.
Aided by an accurate understanding, CSPs can monitor the threat, support law enforcement and regulatory efforts aimed at preventing the proliferation of these services, incorporate insight into churn prediction models, and help to educate other stakeholders.
This whitepaper shines a light on the shadow market of the video and television piracy ecosystem and explains how CSPs can begin to quantify the impact on their own networks and, ultimately, to their business.