The Nature and Incidence of Software Piracy: Evidence from Windows

The Nature and Incidence of Software Piracy: Evidence from Windows

By
Susan Athey, Scott Stern
Economic Analysis of the Digital Economy (National Bureau of Economic Research Conference Report). Chicago: University of Chicago Press, April
1, 2015, Pages 443–447

This chapter evaluates the nature, relative incidence, and drivers of software piracy. The authors measure piracy for a specific product — Windows 7 — which was associated with a significant level of private sector investment. Using anonymized telemetry data, the authors characterize how piracy occurs, the relative incidence of piracy across different economic and institutional environments, and the impact of enforcement efforts on choices to install pirated versus paid software.