Piracy prevention and the pricing of information goods
AbstractThis paper studies the effects of piracy on prices and welfare and determines the optimal enforcement policy. A monopolist sells an information good at a non-linear price in two versions designed for two types of consumers with different willingness to pay. Consumers with low willingness to pay consumers can copy the good at some cost and with some quality loss. High valuation customers cannot engage in full-fledged piracy. However, they can consume the version designed for the other customer type. We show that copying or piracy may be welfare enhancing because it enables a good to be provided to individuals with a low willingness to pay without undermining the producing firm's ability to finance the development cost via the pricing scheme applied to high valuation consumers. There are then three levels of piracy control.Â The highest is that chosen by the private monopoly. The next level is the one chosen by a welfare-maximizing monopoly. The lowest level, which can be zero, is the level of control chosen by the public authority when the good is sold (and priced) by a profit-maximizing monopoly.
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Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by Elsevier in its journal Information Economics and Policy.
Volume (Year): 21 (2009)
Issue (Month): 1 (February)
Contact details of provider:
Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/505549
Piracy Copying Intellectual property Information good;
Other versions of this item:
- Cremer, Helmuth & Pestieau, Pierre, 2006. "Piracy Prevention and the Pricing of Information Goods," CEPR Discussion Papers 5556, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- CREMER, Helmuth & PESTIEAU, Pierre, 2006. "Piracy prevention and the pricing of information goods," CORE Discussion Papers 2006018, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
- L11 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Production, Pricing, and Market Structure; Size Distribution of Firms
- L86 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Services - - - Information and Internet Services; Computer Software
- D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
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