Piracy can help to increase a market

Joichi Ito has a cool post on how fansubbers are helping out with the pre-sales of anime, by releasing illegal fansubs of anime before it is licensed outside Japan.
I have talked about this at length myself in my Manga & Anime Category.
The thing I notice is that if an Anime reaches around 1000+ bittorrent downloads it is almost guaranteed to get licensed within 6 months.
Only Naruto was the exception to this rule-of-thumb.
[It took until ep 160-something before it got licensed!]
The thing that really gets me is that the media industry insists on the DVD region system, even though it encourages piracy.
Think about it.
If I can’t play a US released DVD on my Dutch DVD player, but it is only licensed and available in the US, then I am likely to see if I know any American friends willing to get me a DVD rip.
I sincerely believe that if the media industry dropped DVD regions that piracy would decrease and their sales would actually increase.
I think they wanted regions out of fear.
And that alone is never a good reason for anything.

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