Table of Contents

Handbook on the Digital Creative Economy

Handbook on the Digital Creative Economy

Elgar original reference

Edited by Ruth Towse and Christian Handke

Digital technologies have transformed the way many creative works are generated, disseminated and used. They have made cultural products more accessible, challenged established business models and the copyright system, and blurred the boundary between producers and consumers. This unique resource presents an up-to-date overview of academic research on the impact of digitization in the creative sector of the economy.

Chapter 37: Games and entertainment software

John Banks and Stuart Cunningham

Subjects: economics and finance, cultural economics, intellectual property, innovation and technology, intellectual property, technology and ict, law - academic, intellectual property law


Games and the broader interactive entertainment industry are the major ëborn global/ born digitalí creative industry. The videogame industry (formally referred to as interactive entertainment) is the economic sector that develops, markets and sells videogames to millions of people worldwide. There are over 11 countries with revenues of over $1 billion. This number was expected to grow 9.1 per cent annually to $48.9 in 2011 and $68 billion in 2012, making it the fastest-growing component of the international media sector (Scanlon, 2007; Caron, 2008). A 2009 PricewaterhouseCoopers report details that, from 2005 to 2009, the global revenues of videogames grew annually at 16 per cent. This growth rate is more than five times faster than the total media and entertainment industries (PricewaterhouseCoopers, 2009, in De Prato et al., 2012: 222). The September 2011 ITU-T Technology Watch Report (Adolph, 2011) details how revenues of the videogames industry surpassed those of the US movie industry in 2005 and those of the US music industry in 2007. In the UK, the videogames industry had surpassed the music industry in terms of revenues by 2008. The report states that, ëAccording to Gartner research, the global videogame industry ñ software, hardware and online gaming ñ will grow from $74 billion (estimate for 2011) to $112 billion in sales by 2015í and that, ëIn comparison, movie theaters around the world reported a combined total revenue of $31.8 billion in 2010í (Adolph, 2011: 17).

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