New Study Reveals Strength of Copyright Industries
A new study released today by the International Intellectual Property Alliance (IIPA) reveals that core copyright industries contributed more than $1 trillion in value in 2012 to the U.S. economy (almost 6.5% of the total U.S. GDP). The study, Copyright Industries in the U.S. Economy: The 2013 Report, records the economic influence and contributions of industries in the U.S. dealing with the creation, production, distribution, broadcasting and exhibition of copyright materials. An update of 13 previous studies, it was prepared by Stephen E. Siwek of Economists Incorporated for the IIPA. Drawing from data from the Bureau of Economic Analysis and other government agencies, the study provides evidence to show the strength of copyright as a source of economic growth.
The study drew many positive conclusions for core copyright industries and their impact on the U.S. economy. It found that they employed about 5.4 million U.S. workers (about 5% of the total private employment sector) who, on average, were paid 33% more than the rest of U.S. employees. The study also found that core copyright industries grew at a 4.7% aggregate annual rate, more than twice that of the growth for the U.S. economy. In addition, core copyright industries contributed $142 billion in foreign sales and exports, which far exceeds that of other sectors like aerospace and pharmaceuticals.
The study also looked at data for total copyright industries, which includes copyright industries that are "partial copyright," "non-dedicated support" and "interdependent industries." Over 11.1 million workers were employed by the total copyright industries (8.35% of all U.S. employment and 10% of all private employment nationally), and these workers' average annual pay was 18% more than the U.S. average annual wage. In 2012, the rate of annual growth of the total copyright industries was 4.99%.
The IIPA's study comes at an interesting time. Google just won a lawsuit brought on by authors against the massive, scanned online library Google Books. As the copyright industry continues to grow, it will be interesting to see how its leaders deal with these complicated issues of ownership and distribution.