Joe Karaganis on public attitudes toward piracy

Joe Karagenis

March 5, 2013

Joe Karaganis, vice president of The American Assembly at Columbia University, discusses the relationship between digital convergence and cultural production in the realm of online piracy.

Karaganis’s work at American Assembly arose from a frustration with the one-sided way in which industry research was framing the discourse around global copyright policy. He shares the results of Copy Culture in the US & Germany, a recent survey he helped conduct that distinguishes between attitudes towards piracy in the two countries. It found that nearly half of adults in the U.S. and Germany participate in a broad, informal “copy culture,” characterized by the copying, sharing, and downloading of music, movies, TV shows, and other digital media. And while citizens support laws against piracy, they don’t support outsized penalties.

Karaganis also discuses the new “six-strike” Copyright Alert System in the U.S., of which he is skeptical. He also talks about the politics of copyright reform and notes that there is a window of opportunity for the Republican Party to take up the issue before demography gives the advantage to the much younger Democratic Party. 

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