Have you ever downloaded software illegally online, or installed software on more than one computer when you didn't have the right to? If so, you're not alone: over half of people with computers admit to pirating software.
According to the annual BSA Global Software Piracy Study, 57% of computer users were willing to admit that they pirate software. All told, that adds up to an estimated $63.4 billion worth of software, though there's no way to tell how much of that hurts software makers' bottom line.
Males pirate more than women, and more pirates — 68% — come from "emerging markets" (read: those who can't afford to buy software) than from "mature" markets that account for 24% of the total. The problem is at its worst in China, where the piracy rate is 77%. The study also found that businesses pirate more software than private users.
Part of the reason for such a high piracy rate is partially due to people looking to save a few bucks, of course, but there are likely other causes too. Adobe Photoshop is a frequent target of software pirates because the ultra-useful software is so expensive ($699) — pirates likely wouldn't buy Photoshop if piracy wasn't an option. Other pirates are downloading older software that simply isn't available for sale anymore.
[Image credit: The Pirate Bay]
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