I completely agree with Eoin Pursell’s short article in response to some figures that were released in May and are stated in this article from the Telegraph which stated that one in eight women over 35 admit to having downloaded and unlicensed e-book. Purcell points out that you have to consider that, perhaps, this is partly due to accessibility. If it was easy for these women to access the legitimate e-books then perhaps they wouldn’t be forced to download pirated copies of the e-books that they want. You can look to the Harry Potter series as an example of this. Illegal download was the only way to get the series, and it was pirated often because readers weren’t given a legitimate means to buy it. In this scenario, I’m sure that both the author and the publisher lost a ton of money. Let’s face it, making e-books more readily available, might actually bring the number of people using pirated copies of e-books down.
It’s interesting to note, as mentioned in The Telegraph, that a higher percentage of women over 35 are using pirated e-books than pirated music. I think this comes right down to accessibility, price and value. It’s inherently difficult to make people see the value of something that’s intangible, and I think it’s probably easier to convince someone to spend $0.99 or even $1.29 on a song than it is to get them to spend over $10.00 on an e-book. This is where publishers are going to have to get creative with e-books and make potential customers see that there is ‘worth’ to purchasing their e-books rather than pirating them.