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Home >> World
UPDATED: 08:46, February 17, 2007
L.A. County pays heavily for piracy products
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Bootleg DVDs, CDs, prescription drugs and other merchandise such as handbags cost nine industries across Los Angeles County more than 100,000 jobs and about 5.2 billion dollars in lost sales in 2005, said a new study.

Conducted by the Los Angeles County Economic Development Corp., the motion picture industry accounted for about half the losses -- 2.7 billion dollars -- followed by the recording industry, which sustained 850 million in losses, said the study published on Friday by the Los Angeles Times on Friday.

"Every dollar lost to piracy represents wages lost for the hardworking families that make the Los Angeles entertainment industry the envy of the world," Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa said in a statement.

Villaraigosa planned to announce the creation of a citywide task force to combat film and music piracy.

The numbers are little more than educated guesses about an activity that is inherently difficult to track, the study's authors acknowledged.

Purveyors tend to avoid government surveys, and data are typically scarce or unreliable, said the report.

Analysts have noted, for example, that someone buying a pirated DVD on a street corner may not necessarily have done so in lieu of purchasing one at a Best Buy, according to The Times.

Nonetheless, the report, titled "False Bargain: The Los Angeles County Economic Consequences of Counterfeit Products," is the most comprehensive to date on piracy's effect specifically in Los Angeles.

Officials aim to use the study as ammunition in pushing for harsher penalties for piracy and getting support for a broad-based task force to tackle the problem, according to the paper.

Source: Xinhua

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