CRIA’s “Anti-Piracy” Spending

The Copyright Board of Canada is currently conducting the Tariff 22 hearings with "the Coalition" (which includes CRIA and Apple) scheduled to appear next week.  Public access to the parties' submissions typically excludes most financial information, however, the witness statement from CRIA President Graham Henderson contains an interesting piece of information.  The statement features a breakdown of CRIA "anti-piracy" spending including:

  • over $3 million paid to IFPI over a five year period (2002-2006) for international anti-piracy activities
  • at least $4 million spent in Canada on anti-piracy activities during that same period

Is this a lot of money?  Relative to the revenues of CRIA's members, it is fairly low – revenues from record sales alone during that period were well above $2 billion.  When contrasted with the broader Canadian music industry, it is pretty high – the most recent Statistics Canada data on the industry reported that there are 300 record labels in Canada, of which only 39 generate more than $1 million per year in revenue. 

Either way, perhaps the most surprising aspect is the amount spent internationally.  Notwithstanding the persistent (if false) claims that Canada trails behind other countries on copyright matters, nearly half of CRIA's "anti-piracy" dollars are spent outside the country.

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