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Sony Pictures latest to pull out of Korea's falling DVD market

Following in the footsteps of Paramount, Universal, Buena Vista and 20th Century Fox, Sony Pictures is leaving South Korea because of poor sales and rampant piracy, The Korea Times reports this week.

Korean DVD sales will have fallen to around $285 million this year from a high $673 million in 2002. This is attributed mainly to the ubiquitous super-high speed broadband network whose penetration rate by household hit 90.1 percent last year, report NewTeeVee. In Seoul, the rate was 107.8 percent.

In a recent survey, almost 50% of Korea’s Internet users have admitted to downloading movies from the Internet, and the typical user is downloading about a movie a week.

The slump of DVD sales numbers has also taken its toll on DVD rental stores. The Korea Times is reporting that there were 10,000 of these Blockbuster-type stores back in 2001, but the number was down to 3,500 at the end of last year.

Story filed 10.09.08

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