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Piracy Cost Game Industry Over 3.8 Trillion Yen -- Report

CESA shares some figures from an investigation into piracy on portable game machines.


Just how much money has piracy cost the game industry? The Computer Entertainment Suppliers Association (CESA) believes the figure to be over 3.816 trillion yen.

The organization, which also organizes the Tokyo Game Show, shared today the results of an investigation into video game piracy that it conducted with the cooperation of Tokyo University's Baba Lab.

The investigation resulted in a figure of 3.816 trillion yen in worldwide losses resulting from piracy on just the DS and PSP between 2004 and June 2009. Domestically, the figure was 954 billion yen.

To arrive at these figures, researchers checked download counts at the top 114 piracy sites for the Japanese versions of the top 20 software titles from 2004 to 2009. They calculated the total Japanese figure by factoring in the price of the games and the ratio of sales for the top 20 to the whole market. To get the worldwide figure, they multiplied by four under the presumption that Japan accounts for 25% of of the world's software market.

Peer-to-peer sharing methods like Winny and Share were not included in the investigation. CESA notes that because of this, the actual figures could be much higher.

CESA also reported a number of other findings from its investigations. The country with the most servers hosting piracy sites is America. China is number 2. Together, these two countries account for 60% of all servers. Researchers weren't able to find any domestic servers.

America is number one in terms of number of accesses to piracy sites. Japan is number 2, with China third.

For more from CESA's investigation, including a link to a PDF with the full results, see this press release (the PDF link is at the bottom, above the phone numbers).

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