There are numerous problems connected with copyright protection. Problems in high technology are due to (a) the development of techniques for the dissemination of creative works (reprography, computers, satellites, television by cable, video-cassettes, [etc]), (b) the ease with which communications technology can be imitated and (c) the globalization of the world economy, which has intensified both the incentives and harm of such violations.
Abuse of intellectual property rights has led to a worldwide business estimated to be worth as much as $60 billion a year. In the European Community the estimated loss from phonogram piracy alone in 1984 was about $27 million.
Illicit versions of British textbooks are available through Southeast Asia. British publishers claim that in Taiwan alone they are losing £25 million a year because locally pirated editions are available at a fraction of their UK price. Losses in Singapore are estimated at £16 million a year, in Korea £10 million a year, in Nigeria £6 million a year, in Indonesia £5 million a year and in Pakistan and Malaysia £4 million a year each.
Espionage in high technology for weapons systems and spacecraft has saved the former Soviet Union more than $50 billion in research costs, according to American government sources.
2. The technologies and audio-visual media required for copyright piracy are now widely available and used. It is urgently necessary to find solutions which reconcile the rights of authors or their assignees with users' interests.