Adobe’s Plan To Turn Pirates Into Customers
Richard Atkinson, head of the Anti-Piracy department at Adobe, believes that instead of blaming pirates for doing what they do, a way to make them paying customers must be found. As such, the popular company is cooking up a plan, and they’re not the only ones to do so.
This year’s Anti-Piracy and Content Protection Summit came with a rather astonishing surprise. David Kaplan, who is leading the Anti-Piracy Operations section at Warner Bros, made public the studio’s intention to reconsider its position on piracy and pirates. In other words, WB realized that piracy is actually acting as an agent for consumers’ needs. With that in mind, Warner Bros started to adjust its marketing plan in order to drive people towards legal content. Also, WB considers that right-holders could help by giving consumers exactly what they want and when they want it. We’ve already spoken about why people are more likely to go and pirate content instead of buying it, and it seems that the industry is finally getting the point.
The same idea is in Adobe’s mind.
“The strategy and concept of moving from traditional ‘enforcement-led anti piracy’ to a ‘business-focused pirate-to-pay conversion program’ is a BIG change, needing changes to operational elements as well as cultural elements,” Atkinson said.
“Everyone is tired of the entire concept and term ‘Anti-Piracy’, even the term ‘Content Protection’ too. It feels like an ongoing war that has been going on for 20+ years… with the same old good-guy vs bad-guy battles,” he continued.
He went on by saying that while online piracy is a problem not to be ignored, the solution to it lies in the hands of exactly those businesses who are trying to fight against it.
“The core fundamental aspect is not necessarily technology… it is UNDERSTANDING what is really going on. In my years working in this space, I have consistently found that very few people actually have FACTS about what is going on,” Atkinson believes.
“Once you have the facts, then it will change your beliefs and your actions,” he added.
Adobe is now taking a new approach by shifting their focus from boxed products to cloud-based subscriptions. To that end, the software company had already launched Creative Cloud, a solution to better the prices of Adobe Photoshop and several other products.
“I do not think people who pirate our software do it because they are bad people, or because they like to steal things. I just think that they decided that they can not afford it,” David Wadhwani working for Adobe said when Creative Cloud was launched.