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Did You Know?

The Copyright Sector Spurred U.S. Economic Growth in 2005

The International Intellectual Property Alliance (IIPA) recently released Copyright Industries and the U.S. Economy: The 2006 Report, the eleventh in a series of annual research reports used to advocate for the copyright sector and the creative products it protects. The report tracks the sector's two industry categories. The first are the "core" industries whose primary purpose is to produce or distribute copyright materials. The second are "other" industries, which focus part of their efforts on copyright materials or produce related support products. This industry category includes manufacturers, wholesalers and retailers of TV sets, DVD and CD players, personal computers, blank recording tapes and certain types of paper.

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According to the report, the copyright sector contributed significantly to the U.S. economy in 2005. It measured the total value the wages and salaries the sector paid to its workers plus its business profits. It found that "core" industries contributed $819 billion to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and the "other" industries contributed $569 billion. In all, the copyright sector comprised 11.12 percent of total GDP in 2005, up slightly from 11.06 percent in 2002.

In real terms, eliminating year-to-year price fluctuations, the copyright sector outpaced annual GDP growth between 2002 and 2005. The real annual growth rate for the copyright sector was around seven percent during these years, compared to the three percent growth rate for GDP. This disparity meant that the copyright sector significantly propelled economic growth during those years. When weighted by its share of GDP, the copyright sector contributed nearly 24 percent of real U.S. GDP growth in 2005.

The IIPA's report emphasizes that the copyright sector's economic contributions improved the quality of life in the U.S. Not only did the copyright sector employ 11.33 million U.S. citizens in 2005, but it also paid them well. In 2005, the average compensation per employee in the copyright sector was $62,727 and $69,839 in the "core" copyright industries, nearly 40 percent higher than the $49,828 average compensation for all U.S. workers.

Source: "Copyright Industries and the U.S. Economy: The 2006 Report", The International Intellectual Property Alliance, 2006.