Lightning strikes 5.89 times

Given billions of copyrighted works, from Web pages to feature films, the stats show that it’s probably harder to get sued in a copyright case than to get hit by lightning. – Stephen Manes

1:700,000 – Chance of getting struck by lightning. (Source)
1:120,000 – Chance of getting struck with a copyright suit. (Math in extended entry)
1:5.89 – Ratio of chance of getting struck by lightning to chance of getting struck with copyright suit.
(Lessig responds to the rest of the article, I just felt like correcting the math.)


To figure out the chance of getting struck with a copyright suit I used a US population of 290,809,777; the estimated population for 2003. The number of copyright suits in 2003 according to Manes was 2,448 and 2,448/290,809,777 = 118,794.8435457516.

3 thoughts on “Lightning strikes 5.89 times

Leave a Reply

To respond on your own website, enter the URL of your response which should contain a link to this post's permalink URL. Your response will then appear (possibly after moderation) on this page. Want to update or remove your response? Update or delete your post and re-enter your post's URL again. (Learn More)