'Core' Copyright Industry Tops Trillion In Value To U.S.

Copyright industries account for over $1 trillion in annual value to U.S. economy, according to a new study being released Nov. 19 by the International Intellectual Property Alliance (IIPA).

That represents almost 6.5% of GDP.

Those figures include U.S. industries that create, distribute and exhibit TV and radio programming, books, print, videogames computer software, music and movies.

According to the study, that "core" copyright workforce is almost 5.4 million jobs with an average annual compensation for "core" copyright workers of $84,644 and $142 billion in foreign sales.

The study is based on data from the Bureau of Economic Analysis and other government stats.

Over the past three years (2009 to 2012), core copyright industries' value grew at an aggregate annual rate of 4.7%, more than twice the growth rate of the economy.

The report comes as studios continue to defend their intellectual property from content pirates and disruptive distribution models like Aereo that they contend are also illegal circumvention of copyright payments.

"This study demonstrates that not only do U.S. copyright industries develop the creative works that inspire and entertain so many, they also provide high paying jobs and spur economic activity, consistently contributing to a trade surplus and adding substantial value to our GDP," said Rep.Judy Chu (D-Calif.), cochair of the Congressional Creative Rights Caucus, in a statement. "This is why we must preserve and protect the works of our creative industry, so they can continue to drive economic growth and innovation with a uniquely American product."

John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.