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Bush Creates New Anti-Piracy Official
July 23, 2005
Thomas Mennecke
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Global piracy continues to run rampant. More specifically, physical piracy has entrenched itself into the very fabric of society. Throughout the world, illegally duplicated CDs and DVDs containing anything from music to movies to software are readily available. In many circumstances, illegitimate copies are often more readily available than the genuine article - and often for a significant discount.

The MPAA and the MPA have been aggressive lately in their efforts to stem physical piracy. It has initiated several programs aimed at bringing attention to this rampant epidemic. One major anti-piracy milestone was accomplished two weeks ago, when the MPA signed a historical agreement with the Chinese Ministry of Culture (MOC) and State Administration of Radio, Film and Television (SARFT.)

Under the agreement, the MPA will provide information about upcoming member films about to be released in China. Chinese authorities will now confiscate any home audio or video equipment that is found playing pirated movies. While such an effort is difficult to enforce, it is the first time Chinese authorities have made any kind of public effort to deal with physical piracy - which by some estimates accounts for 90% of all home entertainment in China.

In furthering their efforts to stem the growth of physical piracy, the Bush administration has created a new senior position called "Coordinator of International Intellectual Property Enforcement." For this position, President George Bush elected Chris Israel, current Deputy Chief of Staff for U.S. Commerce Secretary Carlos M. Guierrez.

“Intellectual property theft costs U.S. businesses billions of dollars and weakens our economy,” Gutierrez said. “American ingenuity and innovation are driving forces in our economy and we need to protect our ideas, both at home and abroad. This new position will help us to be more aggressive and also help us to better coordinate our fight against intellectual property pirates."

Israel’s new job will be to work within the current administration and with foreign governments to develop policies encouraging the enforcement of intellectual property rights. Indeed, the job ahead of Israel is a daunting one, as billions of dollars worth of counterfeit material traverses the globe.

While the job at hand is may seem overwhelming, the MPAA is looking forward to Israel’s ascension.

“I heartily applaud the President for today’s action and appreciate the Administration’s commitment to fighting and winning the battle against intellectual property theft,” said MPAA CEO and President Dan Glickman. “Our industry alone loses billions each year to piracy. I particularly appreciate the stated commitment to reducing piracy in China, where we have a severe problem. The MPAA stands ready to cooperate and assist in this effort in any way we can.”

This story is filed in these Slyck News categories
File-Sharing/P2P Related :: Software

You can read the US Commerce press release here.

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