Streaming Doesn’t Stop Stealing: New Research on Digital Piracy

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What makes people download pirated music? Karla Borja and Suzanne Dieringer, economists at the University of Tampa, surveyed 1,052 college students enrolled in introductory business classes at two Florida universities (one public and one private) in 2014 and 2015. Seventy-eight percent reported to have downloaded music illegally in the previous month. With a 21-question survey, the researchers tested six factors that they had hypothesized increase the likelihood a student will download pirated music, including: low perceptions of risk, negative views of the music industry, peer pressure, familiarity with using the internet and demographic variables like income and gender.