Investigating the Reaction of BitTorrent Content Publishers to Anti-Piracy Actions
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During recent years,a few countries have put in place online antipiracy laws and there has been some major enforcement actions against violators. This raises the question that to what extent antipiracy actions have been effective in deterring online piracy? This is a challenging issue to explore because of the difficulty to capture user behavior, and to identify the subtle effect of various underlying (and potentially opposing) causes. In this paper, we tackle this question by examining the impact of two major antipiracy actions, the closure of Megaupload and the implementation of the French antipiracy law, on publishers in the largest BitTorrent portal who are major providers of copyrighted content online. We capture snapshots of BitTorrent publishers at proper times relative to the targeted antipiracy event and use the trends in the number and the level of activity of these publishers to assess their reaction to these events. Our investigation illustrates the importance of examining the impact of antipiracy events on different groups of publishers and provides valuable insights on the effect of selected major antipiracy actions on publishers' behavior.