Study: Megaupload closure could adversely affect box office grossing of many films

    The closure of the largest file hosting Megaupload about a year ago had a controversial effect on box office movies. A study of the impact of this event on the collection of 1344 films in 49 countries, conducted by German and Danish scientists, revealed that only high-budget blockbusters running on more than 500 screens won from the closure of Megaupload. Films with medium and small budgets are more likely to lose - their box office revenues have only decreased, although not very significantly.

    Researchers suggest that this effect may be due to the fact that blockbusters get enough promotion with centralized means - through traditional advertising. And low-budget films are much more dependent on "viral" advertising, and free file sharing plays such an important role in it that the positive effect of faster dissemination of information about the film outweighs the negative from replacing visits to the cinema with free home viewing. Thanks to file sharing, more solvent audiences learn about the film, and pirates actually advertise movies for free, telling friends about it and sharing links.

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