Mercyhurst Project on Chinese Crime Syndicates and Film Piracy

From 28 November 2007 to 19 February 2008 a team of four graduate students at the Mercyhurst College Institute for Intelligence Studies conducted open source research to estimate where and how Chinese organized crime syndicates will be involved in electronic media intellectual property crime, in particular the illegal copying and distributing of U.S. films, over the next two to five years.

Navigating The Wiki

The Navigation Bar on the left provides a handy, ever-present directory of the Wiki and lists important pages where a visitor can go for information. Below is a brief description of each:

  • Home provides ready access to the opening screen of the Wiki.
  • Terms of Reference is the initial summary of customer requirements and team approach to meeting same.

  • Key Findings presents all of the estimative statements that directly answer the Terms of Reference. It serves as the table of contents for all of our primary reports.
  • Matrices provides direct access to our three estimative spreadsheets, which provide analytical support for a number of our primary reports.
  • Maps offers a series of convenient global and regional maps detailing the location of Chinese organized crime groups.

  • Resources is the doorway to the database we developed during this project.
  • POC is a guide to our team. It includes a list of participants and our contact information.

Understanding The Reports

The following elements make each report and the analysis it contains transparent and understandable.

  • Report Structure --- The title of each estimative report reflects its key finding. The Executive Summary is an estimative statement of the key finding, along with the primary facts that support the estimate. The facts and sources that support the key finding appear in the Discussion section of each report. Links to multimedia contained in the report or to useful sources for additional reading can be found near the bottom of the report page.

  • Words of Estimative Probability --- Every estimative report uses one or more of the terms "likely", "highly likely", "unlikely", "highly unlikely", or "chances are even" to express the degree of probability of an estimative judgment.

  • Source Reliability and Analytic Confidence --- Each estimative report includes the analyst's assessment of the reliability of the sources as well as that analyst's confidence in the estimate. Both source reliability and analytic confidence are assessed on a 1 to 10 scale, with 10 being the highest reliability or level of confidence.

  • Sourcing --- The team used two formats for sourcing throughout the Wiki. Highlighted terms such as Key Findings refer either to pages within the Wiki or web pages with additional information about the term. References to internet sources outside the Wiki or print sources listed on a bibliography page are available by clicking on the period after a sentence.

Product Overview

In putting together this analytic product the Mercyhurst project team (as of 19 February 2008):

  • created over 230 pages of content and analysis on this Wiki.

  • uploaded more than 130 documents, charts, images, and other multimedia files to the Wiki.

  • made more than 2,950 page edits, or an average of 36 page edits per day in 81 days.