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Comunicar Journal 48: Ethics and plagiarism in scientific communication (Vol. 24 - 2016)

The audiovisual content downloads among university students


This article analyses the phenomenon of downloading audio-visual content –movies and television series– which is habitually practiced by university students via the Internet; their attitudes towards illegal downloads; and the education/training that they have about the legal status of this activity. These issues are a frequent reality but are little discussed in our academic context. Data was obtained from a questionnaire designed ad hoc. This was administered to students enrolled in different university degrees (Audio-visual Communication, Primary Education and Social Education). We believe that these college degrees require ethical and legal training on the issues regarding downloading of content from the web. This education is an urgently needed training for young people who will work in educating and informing the citizens of the 21st century. The study results show that university students habitually consume a high percentage of online content from the audio-visual industry (films and television series). Students have clearly favourable attitudes towards this form of consumption. However, students show little regards to the ethical and legal issues surrounding downloading from the Internet. In addition, they have a very low degree of education and training on these issues. The results suggest the need to implement training programs and to conduct information campaigns to improve their information and digital literacy.