Book Piracy

News, statisitics and facts about book piracy. Data about downloading pirated ebooks and the selling and buying of pirated books are collected from publishing agents, book publishing companies and security agencies.

At the end of 2010, China was deploying 650,000 law enforcement personnel to seize and disrupt book piracy, software piracy and movie piracy within the country.

Source: “China Publicly Burns 5.2 Million Pirated Books, Compact Discs,” Bernama, January 10, 2011.

In 2010, there were between 1.5 million to 3 million searches per day on Google for pirated books. The country where the most piracy searches originated from were the United States, followed closely by India.

Source: David Carnoy, “New study suggests e-book piracy is on the rise,” CNET, October 6, 2010.

In the second half of 2009, piracy in Spain cost $6.28 Billion (5.1 Billion Euros) to content producers. Legal sales in the country during the same period were $1.97 Billion (1.6 Billion Euros).

Movie piracy accounted for $2.95 Billion and music piracy for $2.83 Billion.

Of the digital music market, 95 percent is illegally downloaded.

Of the movie market, 83 percent of all movies are illegally downloaded.

53 percent of all video games are illegally downloaded.

And 19 percent of all digital books are pirated.

Source: Pamela Rolfe, “Piracy cost Spain $6 bil in 2nd half of ’09,” Hollywood Reporter, June 1, 2010.


Book piracy in Thailand allows for pirated copies of textbooks to be sold 10 to 15 percent cheaper then authorized copies.

The most pirated textbooks in Thailand are science, math, Thai and English language books.

In Vietnam, 90 percent of the English language books are pirated.

Source: “Police seize pirated textbooks,” Bangkok Post, May 24, 2010.

From 2007 to 2009, police in Turkey seized 7.75 million pirated CDS and Movies, along with 1.6 million pirated books. The counterfeit goods seizures were the result of more than 9,500 police operations that resulted in over 10,000 arrests.

Source: “Turkish police seized millions of bootleg CDs, books,” World Bulletin, November 29, 2009.

A study by Attributor reported that 9 million digital books were pirated off the Internet in 2009.

Source:  Motoko Rich, “Report Finds 9 Million Illegal Downloads of E-Books,” New York Times, Arts Beat, January 14, 2010.

Popular file-hosting website Rapidshare receives requests to remove pirated materials on their servers for about 1 to 2 percent of all files each day.

(What is the black market? Learn more here.)

Source:  Randals Stross, “Will Books Be Napsterized? ,” New York Times, October 3, 2009.

500 million pirated books are produced each year in China, with 40 percent of all books sold being pirated copies.

Source:  Clifford Coonan, “China’s publishers struggle to overcome book piracy,” National (UAE), August 27, 2009.

Book piracy in India causes 30 to 40 percent of a book’s profit to be lost.

Source:  Sunitha Rao, “Book lovers are robbing authors of their due,” DNA India, August 11, 2009.

Book piracy in Vietnam leads to 90 percent of all textbooks used in the English teaching market to be pirated.

Source:  IIPA, “Special 301 Country Reports: Vietnam,” 2009.