Online theft severe threat to Pay TV: MPA

25 Oct,2012

By A Correspondent


Media Partners Asia has published a study on Online Theft in Asia and how it is a severe threat to the Pay Television business.


Excerpts from the executive summary shared with MxMIndia: The continued rise in online theft is adversely impacting the pay television business around the world. This is especially the case in certain leading markets across the Asia Pacific.


The size of the problem in Asia’s advanced markets is more acute than elsewhere for two main reasons: (1) Penetration of high-speed broadband networks; and (2) Early adoption of smart phones, tablets and internet-connected television sets.


These factors have ensured a significant spike in online theft in six of the most developed markets in Asia, namely Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore and Malaysia. Of all these territories, online theft is the most acute in Singapore. Half of all internet users in Singapore visit infringing sites. Furthermore, data from a number of studies show Singapore’s per capita infringement ranks number one in Asia and the fifth highest globally.


With online theft reaching such peak levels, the business of legitimate in-country players in Singapore is hurt, as is the business of legitimate players in Asia’s other advanced markets. More broadly, such piracy hurts Singapore’s vibrant creative economy and perverts the island’s content ecosystem.


Meanwhile, these same legitimate pay tv players are innovating swiftly in their home markets to provide ‘TV Everywhere’service offerings. But with online theft now a mainstream practice, the growth of these new legitimate online offerings is stunted. Of these six advanced Asia countries, two – South Korea and Malaysia – have governments that are implementing effective practical approaches to mute the continued growth of online theft. Singapore, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Japan – for the good of legitimate in-country players – should consider following suit.


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