Piracy on the silver screen

Rafael Rob, Joel Waldfogel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

89 Scopus citations


Using survey data on movie consumption by about 500 University of Pennsylvania undergraduate students, we ask whether unpaid consumption of movies displaces paid consumption. A variety of cross-sectional and longitudinal empirical approaches show large and statistically significant evidence of displacement. In the most appropriate empirical specification, we find that unpaid first consumption reduces paid consumption by about 1 unit. Unpaid second consumption has a smaller effect, about 0.20 units. Our analysis indicates that unpaid consumption, which makes up 5.2 per cent of movie viewing in our sample, reduced paid consumption in our sample by 3.5 per cent.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)379-395
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Industrial Economics
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 2007


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