The World Intellectual Property Organization promotes the surveying of the economic contribution of copyright and has published a guide to this effect (WIPO, 2003). This position paper argues that the usefulness of the guide (and resulting studies) is limited. This is done by discussing the economic welfare properties of copyright and the challenges faced by European policy makers. The paper gives two suggestions for improving the WIPO methodology and concludes with promising research avenues that might bring the policy debate forward.