Australians Who Pirate Content Online Wish They Didn't Have To

Colton Haynes of Arrow and Jesse L. Martin of The Flash. Chris Frawley/Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. via Getty Images

Australians who illegally download content are frustrated by cost and availability of content.

These “pirates” are also more likely to support the content industry through legitimate purchases than other Australians, according to research from CHOICE.

The majority of Australians never download, stream or watch pirated TV shows and movies, but 33% have illegally downloaded or streamed content online.

“This data shows that most Australians who pirate are even more willing to spend money on content than those who don’t pirate,” says CHOICE Director of Campaigns and Communications, Matt Levey.

“People who illegally download content are more likely to have a Quickflix account than the average Australian, and they are significantly more likely to pay to see a movie at the cinema. Some people have suggested we’re a nation of pirates but CHOICE has found we’re a nation of couch potatoes who seek out content, online and off.”

A substantial proportion of people are pirating because of the high cost of content in Australia, and the time differences between releases here and overseas.

“The content industry says they’ve changed but we keep seeing ridiculous delays to get popular TV and movies to Australia,” Levey says.

The TV hit The Flash aired in the US on October 7 but Australians had to wait until December 3 before it was available on Foxtel.

“There is a strong perception among pirates that content in Australia is more expensive than overseas,” Levey says. “Given pirates are already willing to pay for content from Australian providers, giving them an easier way to access cheaper, legitimate content from overseas would help reduce the rates of piracy.”

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