Movie Copyrights: How They Affect Ordinary Viewers

Movie Copyrights: How They Affect Ordinary Viewers

Copyrights are a difficult issue to discuss intelligently in today’s internet-driven, social media-fueled world. It’s hard to know when a copyright affects you, someone else, or no one at all. It’s even harder to find who can rightfully profit from a copyright than not.

In the movie industry, copyright issues are slightly more straightforward, as the copyright is set long before the movie enters the public domain. However, the use and expansion of those copyrights may not be in the best interest of all consumers.

Movie Copyrights: Who They’re For

Movie copyrights, unless otherwise specified, belong first to the individual or entity that creates or makes arrangements for the movie in question. Most commonly, this goes to the individual producer or the backing production company. Occasionally, this may be the broadcaster who commissions the film.

What Does This Mean for You?

Some make the argument that copyrights protect consumers by making sure the industry is able to keep their jobs up. However, the global box office worth of 2018 is valued at almost $42 billion, while the global film industry for the same year fell around $136 billion, so…

Realistically, what copyrights mean for the average consumer is:

  • Higher prices at the movie theater (theaters make 40% of their money on marked up concessions)
  • You can’t show a movie for entertainment if you charge admission or allow “the general public” watch
  • Teachers technically can’t show films in classrooms if they aren’t for the purpose of academic learning (remember when you watched Tangled instead of learning English? Illegal.)
  • Bars, public libraries, gyms, childcare centers…anywhere that shows a movie must first obtain (read: pay for) a public license to show the content

Movie copyrights, in short, affect the average consumer by limiting their ability to enjoy their shows without someone, or several people, paying for it first. A website like 123Movies lets you circumvent those ridiculous prices by shielding your movies for you – completely free of charge.

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