A study published in Denmark underlines that, in this rich country, school books are too expensive, and that this situation pushes a majority of students to resort to piracy.
In these times of uncertainty, student life is more complicated than ever. Studying is expensive, and if for a long time already, young people have been using various stratagems (loan, photocopies, etc.) to obtain the necessary, technology has given everyone access to downloading works from pirate sites. It’s illegal, of course, but this big saving is sometimes a real relief for penniless students. She also represents a huge shortfall for publishers.
According to a survey conducted by Epinion in 2023, “50% of students using e-books have acquired at least one pirated digital book. Moreover, at least 1 in 4 obtained more than half of their e-books illegally “. In Denmark, this issue is taken very seriously, and penalties can go as far as jail time for those who profit from e-book piracy.
Students pirate school books because they are too expensive
This threat does not frighten the majority of respondents who, 89%, do not plan to stop this practice even under the threat of spending time in prison. Of course, not all students are potential pirates. When some copy one or two textbooks in the year, others, exactly 7% of respondents, obtain all of their books from online pirate libraries, Z-Library. Students will not be able to plead ignorance either: 70% of them know very well that this practice is illegal.
Students reject responsibility for this situation on school and university institutions which, in their eyes, do not communicate correctly on what is authorized or not. In this context, the Danish Rights Alliance has created a number of educational resources for institutions. Its president, Maria Fredenslund, says: “We hope that more and more schools and universities will contribute to end this culture that normalizes illegal behavior in the student population.