Studios join forces to battle online piracy

4 min read
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Aar, pirates. Who doesn’t like fighting ‘em pirates? Welcome aboard savvies and come join us in fighting ‘em, evil pirates… Ooh, sorry, I’m talking like a pirate again when they’re supposed to be our enemies.  That’s right – our enemies – aar…. Am I doing this right?

While pirates may look like they’re having all the fun, the truth is that real piracy is a big problem that is ruining the entertainment industry and not just affecting big companies and their profits, but the livelihoods and careers of many thousands of people that work for them. The problem is so big in fact that it has become too difficult for companies to fight alone, which is the reason why yesterday, over 30 companies including Disney, Warner Bros, Sony, Netflix, HBO and NBCUniversal joined forces in the effort to fight online piracy.

This newly formed group called the Alliance for Creativity and Entertainment (ACE) is designed to help content creators pool resources together and work more closely with law enforcement to find and stop pirates from stealing movies and TV shows. The details, as revealed by The Verge, don’t really go into the specifics on how they intend to reduce piracy through this initiative, but that is probably by design because if you do give pirates any clues on what you’re doing, they will likely try to circumvent your efforts.

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The aim of ACE though is not just to focus on the problem from a US perspective, but at a global level and they are hoping a larger funding pool can be used to fund investigation efforts across the US and Europe that they are hoping will uncover large-scale piracy operations and allow them to collectively file litigation against these criminal parties.

ACE reports that as many as 5.4 Billion downloads of pirated films and TV shows took place last year, which could even be a conservative estimate given that the numbers behind piracy are a little hard to track. CBS executive VP Jonathan Anschell provided the following statement about the formation of ACE:

In this golden age of content, it’s more important than ever that we remain vigilant about copyright protection. For the creative community to truly flourish, it must know that its work will be safe from theft.

I personally hope their efforts prove to be successful in not just catching the pirates, but finding successful ways to prevent it from happening in the first place. This is only scratching the surface of the problem, as piracy is an even bigger business if you include the gaming and music industries in as well. They probably have a big fight on their hands, but unlike in the movies where I love to support those swashbuckling pirates, this time I’ll be rooting for the good guys

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The full list of ACE partners includes: Amazon, AMC Networks, BBC Worldwide, Bell Canada and Bell Media, Canal+ Group, CBS Corporation, Constantin Film, Foxtel, Grupo Globo, HBO, Hulu, Lionsgate, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM), Millennium Media, NBCUniversal, Netflix, Paramount Pictures, SF Studios, Sky, Sony Pictures Entertainment, Star India, Studio Babelsberg, STX Entertainment, Telemundo, Televisa, Twentieth Century Fox, Univision Communications Inc., Village Roadshow, The Walt Disney Company, and Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.

Last Updated: June 14, 2017

Craig Risi

A man of many talents, but no sense how to use them. I could be discovering the cure for aids or finding ways to achieve world peace, but I’d rather be watching movies and writing here instead.

  • Skittle

    I would download a car.

    • Matthew Holliday

      Probably dont have enough cap for that.
      And for uncapped, I cant imagine that car sizes are within ISPs acceptable usage policy.

      • schitsophrenic-toothbrush

        Not too sure if you know but Skittle is hinting to the car theory with regards to piracy. If I am not mistaken it goes something like this.. you own a car and someone duplicates that car, you still own the original car therefore would it constitute as stealing?

    • Yondaime

      Ah, I see you’re a man of culture as well.

    • Jim of the Banana

      I would download a mansion!

  • HvR

    Maybe if they all band together and stop BS geolocking,supporting entertainment reseller and ISP monopolies they will make a dent in the piracy markets

    • BakedBagel

      This “Fighting Piracy” is seriously starting to go the way of the Drug War.

      Millions of dollars are being spent to “curb” piracy. Cool, then why after all these years is it still an issue?

      You can take down sites true, but mirrors are still up people can still download torrents.

      I guess its When in doubt throw money at it. Not “Why” people pirate. Ive pirated less and less games as ive grown older. Doesnt mean the justification goes away with it tho.

    • Mighty Meh

      I suppose the explosion of streaming made studio execs a bit nervous.

      I’d happily pay a reasonable amount of money to a streaming service to allow me to watch whatever I want whenever I want. I will not however pay netflix, amazon, showmax, hulu and another 15 providers due to exclusivity deals and geolocking.

      Disconnected CEO’s once again spoil a good thing by being too greedy. That in a nutshell is why they might as well take all that money meant for stopping piracy and flush it down the toilet. People just want a reasonably priced easy to use platform to watch their show’s, if companies cant see eye to eye and provide it people will turn to piracy.

  • Sock-puppet

    With Steam, Origin and all the other game clients and specials pirating games has become obsolete. There are still people that would fight for it, but ultimately unless you’re stuck in a country that somehow blocks all of those clients but allows torrenting there is very little reason to pirate games.

    However, taking a look at the things that I personally torrent I can see why people torrent. I have tried going the Crunchyroll route and it failed, the internet is slow and I can’t wait three hours to let one HD video load. Taking it back to pirated games I can only assume that SKIDROW and them still disable the multiplayer functions? Which means that pirated games gives you the advantage of being able to play offline…

  • Jim of the Banana

    Leave ONLINE PIRACY ALONE, you bastards!!!! Without Online Piracy the third world would have to wait months for Game of Thrones!! You heartless racists! Black, brown and eastern Europeans around the world deserve to watch Game of Thrones too!!!

    http://vignette2.wikia.nocookie.net/victorious/images/d/de/LEAVE_BRITNEY_ALONE%21_gif.gif

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