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Volume of legal copying has decreased

Ministry of Education and Culture
Publication date 13.1.2021 10.51
News item

The 2020 study shows that the volume of annual private copying among people aged between 15 and 79 is approximately 258-276 million music and video files. This total number (258 million files) includes only the legal private copying as defined in the Copyright Act. In the 2019 survey, the corresponding estimate of private copying was 275–297 million files. Similar information was gathered by Taloustutkimus in 2019. In 2020, children aged between 12 and 14 were also included in the study alongside people aged between 15 and 79.

In 2020 music covered by legal private copying was copied by 203 000 and video material by over 757 000 Finns between 15–79 years of age. There were all in all over 900 000 copiers of music and video material.  The number of people making copies has been in decline for the last couple of years. In 2014 there were still over 1.6 million people making private copies.

The 2020 study also investigated copying by 12–14 year old children. When copies made by them were added, the amount of private legal copying in 2020 among 12–79 year olds is 259–278 million files (400–451 million files in 2016).

The most often used sources for copying music are streaming services (offline saving), freely downloadable files from the internet (e.g. artists’ own web pages) and original CD discs. Of these, only the music copied from original CD’s is included in the figures of private copying. Copies of videos are most often copies of TV programmes.

Over half of those who had copied music would have acquired the copied material from some other source, if the possibility of copying did not exist. Almost a third of those who copied music would have used chargeable sources for acquiring the music. The share of those who used a chargeable source was slightly lower than in the 2019 study. Over a third of those who had copied video files would have acquired the copied video material in some other way, if the possibility of copying did not exist. Chargeable source for acquiring video files would have been used by almost a fifth of the respondents. Regarding video files, the shares are at the same level as in the 2019 study.

Three out of four of the Finns have printed, saved, photocopied or scanned graphic material for private use during the past year. The most frequently used ways of copying are printing and saving. They also comprise the largest number of copies (number of pages). Photocopied or scanned materials are most often official forms or invoices/bank statements, printed materials in turn are most often photographs, official forms, recipes or educational materials. 

Publishers of the printed or saved graphic materials are most often private persons (webpages or blogs), a company (e.g. Valio), or public administration. The estimate of the number of pages covered by remuneration of private copying is 535–613 million pages (based on the material type classification of Kopiosto).
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The main objective of the survey was to determine the amount of private copying regarding music and video material in Finland. 

The survey also gives a comprehensive view into the use of entertainment electronics by the Finnish population, as well as their consumer behaviour regarding music and video content. The study also investigated the harm caused by copying of music and video material. In addition, the private copying of graphic material was investigated.

Private copying survey 2020