Lies, Damn Lies and Warner Bros. Statistics

8 May ’07

Michael and Mathew both cover the latest effort by the US movie industry to pretend that movie counterfeiting is a serious problem in Canada – yet another step in its campaign to embarrass the Canadian Government to accept the US’s most visible cultural export – its intellectual property law regime.

What concerns me almost more than this news, though, is the Globe’s inability to cover the issue with any discernment. Reporter “Tenille Bonoguore” does little more than parrot back Warner’s nonsense. Indeed, the only discerning observation from the nation’s newspaper of record comes from the blog of one of its writers – Mathew’s joint. This is simply shameful.

Update: Ditto Reuters. Honestly, this coverage is almost imbecilically juvenile.

Updater: More debunking from Michael, this time from the Financial Times and the OECD, which is to release a report describing movie piracy claims as being exaggerated. Gist:

The report, due for endorsement by the OECD board later this month, could prove embarrassing for international business lobbies, which have used the higher estimates to lift intellectual property rights up the global political agenda and to demand crackdowns in China and elsewhere.

And what do we get from the Globe? More gullible repetition of MPAA nonsense, containing not a single sign of intelligent life, and void of any actual reporting. Speechless. Absolutely speechless. We’ve seen this movie before, of course: lobbyists plant their spin in the media, and then sell the media coverage back to a gullible public and easily-led politicians as evidence that the issue is real (‘If it’s in the Globe, it must be a problem’).

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Rob Hyndman May 12, 2007 at 06:33

Up is down and black is white in spin-land!


Patrick Ross May 10, 2007 at 22:48

So let’s get this straight: Warner Brothers wants to get back at the Canadian government by not having preview screenings for movies it already wasn’t having preview screenings for?



Connie Crosby May 10, 2007 at 19:36

Yes, remember the kerfuffle a few years back when one of the newspapers stopped publishing show times in Toronto?

I also wonder if this is yet another part of the resentment over Canada taking in a good portion of the movie filming business.


Rob Hyndman May 10, 2007 at 06:23

Agreed, Connie. I also wonder sometimes – the movie and music industry are avid advertisers in the newspapers – is there a relationship between this and the way these “stories” are reported?


Connie Crosby May 9, 2007 at 23:38

Unfortunately I wonder if this isn’t a hallmark of the way things are going with today’s media, that we are seeing just a blind replication of quotes and ideas with less analysis. Just more evidence that there is less and less depth to the news. I was going to say this was old media using new media techniques, but I wouldn’t even say that. Definitely as a blogger I myself am at times guilty of parroting what I hear and not giving it thought until later. It is getting easier and easier to propagate propaganda such as this.


Mathew Ingram May 8, 2007 at 21:01

Thanks, Rob. The cheque is in the mail :-)


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