Study suggests shutting down MegaUpload hurt box office ticket sales

By on November 27, 2012, 8:30 AM

It’s probably a safe bet to assume that members of the Motion Picture Association of America were among the happiest around when they learned that file hosting site MegaUpload had been shut down and their servers had been seized as part of a raid back in January.

The MPAA was a firm believer that MegaUpload was a threat to the entertainment industry although a recent study from researchers from the Copenhagen Business School and the Munich School of Management would suggest otherwise.

These researchers combed over five years’ worth of data and statistics from BoxOfficeMojo.com during the study. They discovered that there was very little evidence to suggest that closing MegaUpload had a positive effect on movie ticket revenue.

In fact, the data (although statistically insignificant) shows that MegaUpload’s closure may have had a negative impact on box office sales of average size and low budget movies. An opposite effect was noticed for larger blockbuster films, however.

They conclude that file sharing serves as a method to spread information about a product from a group of consumers that have zero or very little willingness to pay to users that are very willing to pay for a film.

In layman’s terms, this simply means that people that won’t pay to see a movie may encourage others to do so by making a particular movie available – in other words, helping to spread the word about a movie they might not have heard of.




User Comments: 22

Got something to say? Post a comment
misor misor said:

Lol, if that's true then try before you buy a movie ticket will become the norm.

valentyn0 valentyn0 said:

Lol, if that's true then try before you buy a movie ticket will become the norm.

Total nonses what u said, actually the study is valid, unlike some uneducated folks around here.

Guest said:

They said the same thing about Television....

Sorry guys, get with the times.

Digital content is here to stay and will only continue to take a larger share of traditional revenue streams.

Guest said:

Yes absolutely correct article, if no one wants to pay to watch a movie he wont watch it no matter what but when a friend suggest him or send him link or give him the movie to watch then he might watch and an interest would create in his mind otherwise he wont even watch it

Its simple( just an example ), if you cant afford to buy even a chocolate you wont eat it but if someone give it you for free or offer his you will surely take it and enjoy but if you cant have any-other source then you wont even thing of getting it

Guest said:

Obviously they know that but....they want the whole money...how? very simple, even if having megaupload allow them to have more profit, they dont want to share it with anyone but why? megaupload make money in a different way but if they want the whole money they need to stop megaupload and then they can chain every type of movie, music or service or what ever they want to every single human, so any "View" or "Heard" has to be paid, they dont want any loose end here. so they want every single cent created by using their products and that alot of money bcuz can not be calculated by imagination

Chazz said:

I call B.S. on this article.

NTAPRO NTAPRO said:

Never knew megaupload was related to movies. I've never seen anything other than a few animated shows on it back in the day

Guest said:

I've mentioned this many times. Anti-piracy hurts the software and entertainment industry. I've also mentioned all the reasons (that go way beyond this article).

The too typical emotions-first (stealing bad), thought-later (if ever) pundits will never get it.

But here's a hint anyway... interdependence.

1 person liked this | Lurker101 said:

Maybe the ticket sales drop has a lot more to do with movies these days being badly made remakes and utter cack?

9Nails, TechSpot Paladin, said:

That's an interesting look on filesharing that I hadn't thought of. For brands that might not be well known, people are less likely to take a risk and purchase the item. But if distributed freely and recommended by a peer the brand stands a chance to gain popularity and sales. I've certainly had some co-workers tell me about films and television shows that caught my interest.

For example, I don't watch much if any television and part of the Lost first season was shared to me. I enjoyed the series and purchased the first two seasons on DVD later the following week.

Tekkaraiden Tekkaraiden said:

Maybe the ticket sales drop has a lot more to do with movies these days being badly made remakes and utter cack?

That's what I'm thinking, that and them being in 3d.

Zilpha Zilpha said:

Maybe the ticket sales drop has a lot more to do with movies these days being badly made remakes and utter cack?

That's what I'm thinking, that and them being in 3d.

Yep, my thoughts too, and most of the remakes are just excuses to get actors in bed together. Any given film you see these days has a sex scene within the first 5 minutes, and every twenty thereafter. Who needs a story?

Though I have to admit - Lincoln is probably one of the best films made in the last several years. That's one I'm not sorry to have gone to see in the theatre.

Wendig0 Wendig0, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Maybe the ticket sales drop has a lot more to do with movies these days being badly made remakes and utter crack?

That, and a $15 bucket of popcorn with an $8 coke are what deter me from going to the theater. I don't give a damn what's playing on the big screen with prices like that.

Lurker101 said:

Maybe the ticket sales drop has a lot more to do with movies these days being badly made remakes and utter cack?

That's what I'm thinking, that and them being in 3d.

Strangely enough, I'm sure 3D was the worthless gimmick they came out with to get bums on seats. It doesn't matter what gimmicky rubbish is brought out, as soon as the novelty dies off, they have to rely on the quality of content, and movie content is just cack these days.

There was a time that great movies were made, but right now, I bet you can't list five genuine must-see movies made this year.

BlueDrake said:

Maybe the ticket sales drop has a lot more to do with movies these days being badly made remakes and utter cack?

That's what I'm thinking, that and them being in 3d.

Strangely enough, I'm sure 3D was the worthless gimmick they came out with to get bums on seats. It doesn't matter what gimmicky rubbish is brought out, as soon as the novelty dies off, they have to rely on the quality of content, and movie content is just cack these days.

There was a time that great movies were made, but right now, I bet you can't list five genuine must-see movies made this year.

I will admit there are few must-see movies, but some are more worth your time and money. Did you even look at all the movie listings, and just make a judgement based on ads or something? I'm just wanting to know honestly, there were a few movies that were appealing. Problem is.. finding a good day to actually go.

St1ckM4n St1ckM4n said:

Yeah, cinemas don't really appeal to me.

You're lucky if you get a comfortable seat. Then, you have to pay exuberant prices which only rise every year, with fees for 'recyclable' 3D glasses and booking fees. Then, if you want popcorn or a drink you have to fork out a ton for that. A 'date' can easily be $45AUD just for the cinema.

Add in the screaming kids and surround-sound-omnomnoms, and it really starts getting unpleasant..

Tygerstrike said:

I like how buried in the article they admit that the opposite is true for big budget movies. Movies have gone down hill for awhile. As the previous posters stated about popcorn and a drink being more then the price of the ticket. I agree, movie theaters are pirates on concesion items. However, it is illegal to pirate so I just wait till a movie I want to see comes out on video and I buy it at walmart. That way I can sit down and snack for literally 1/4th of the cost of a movie theater, and sit back on my comfy couch and relax, instead of peeling my feet off the floor.

avoidz avoidz said:

The cinema experience has got worse and the home cinema experience has got better.

IvanAwfulitch IvanAwfulitch said:

You have to read this thing carefully. It says that the effects they observed were "statistically insignificant". What that means is simple: the study proves nothing negative and nothing positive. Or, more simply, the shutting down of MegaUpload had absolutely ZERO effect on anything at all. Whether you say it made people buy fewer tickets or more tickets is completely unsubstantiated by the study.

What it does prove is what people have been saying all along: piracy does not affect the music, movie, or gaming industry anywhere near as much as people say it does. MegaUpload's disappearance didn't generate any more or less revenue for them now as compared to when it was still up and running.

In the end, all that happened was the MPAA policed the internet and we got punished for nothing.

avoidz avoidz said:

I agree with you. It hasn't changed much or anything at all. File lockers got a scare and tightened their sharing policies, copyright lobby groups did a brief high-five and got a few headlines, media distribution methods stayed about the same... as did sales and consumption of music and movies and games.

The big corps think by locking down the Internet they can create an environment like Apple and Microsoft apps where they control everything and every dollar.

Guest said:

Sure. Whatever.

Crap movies hurt box office sales nothing else.

Guest said:

Exact same thing happened with Napster. Music Industry was screaming loss of profits. Bands were screaming we were thieves (Metallica....) but what they did not happen to pass along is that CD sales skyrocketed because of Napster. My personal collection went from about 3 to 200 all because of Napster. Because I found other bands I liked and supported them by buying their music. Industry is fighting a losing battle on digital content. Movie stores are closing daily. 4 or 5 years ago it was Red Box that was killing Movie Stores and Movie Houses. Now its digital, Hulu, Netflix......and piratebay.....:)

Load all comments...

Add New Comment

TechSpot Members
Login or sign up for free,
it takes about 30 seconds.
You may also...
Get complete access to the TechSpot community. Join thousands of technology enthusiasts that contribute and share knowledge in our forum. Get a private inbox, upload your own photo gallery and more.