Do pirates play fair? Ethical judgment of unauthorized sports broadcasts

Ethical norms on the Internet are believed to be more permissive than in the ‘real’ world and this belief often serves as an explanation for the prevalence of the so-called digital “piracy”. In this study we provide evidence from a vignette experiment that contradicts this claim. Analyzing the case of sports broadcast, we compare explicitly the ethical judgment of legal and illegal sharing in the offline and online context. We find that the norms concerning legality, availability of alternatives and deriving material benefits from sharing content do not differ substantially between the virtual and real worlds. We also test explicitly for the role of legal awareness and find that emphasizing what is prohibited (copyright infringement) is less effective than focusing on what is permitted (fair use) in reducing the disparity between legal and ethical norms.

Unpublished version

@article{krawczyk_et_al_2017, author = {Krawczyk, Michał and Tyrowicz, Joanna and Kukla-Gryz, Anna and Hardy, Wojciech }, title = {Do pirates play fair? Testing copyright awareness of sports viewers}, journal = {Behaviour \& Information Technology}, volume = {36}, number = {6}, pages = {650-661}, year = {2017}, }