I was on Capitol Hill this morning for the Congressional International Anti-Piracy Caucus (IAPC)’s unveiling of its “2011 International Piracy Watch List,” which flags countries where content theft is particularly egregious.
Senators Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) and Orrin Hatch (R-UT) and Congressmen Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) and Adam Schiff (D-CA) lead the IAPC, which is committed to protecting American intellectual property and reducing the scourge of content theft abroad.
Theft of American movies, television shows, and other creative content in these countries and around the world costs tens of billions of dollars and jeopardizes the livelihoods of more than 2.4 million stagehands, makeup artists, actors, costume and set designers, truck drivers, architects, directors, accountants, and others who make up America’s creative community.
As more and more people watch and enjoy creative works online, America and its partners abroad need to increase domestic and international efforts to protect those works from theft. We thank Senators Whitehouse and Hatch and Congressmen Schiff and Goodlatte for recognizing the serious threat of digital piracy and for shining a much-needed spotlight on those places around the world where America’s creative works are most at risk. We will continue to work with the IAPC and its members to promote copyright protection and the enforcement of intellectual property rights.
It’s fitting that the IAPC’s announcement comes on the same day that the Senate Judiciary Committee unanimously passed key legislation aimed at preventing content theft by cracking down on rogue websites that sell or distribute stolen creative works. Legislation like the bipartisan PROTECT IP Act sends a strong signal that the United States is committed to tough but smart action against those who try to profit from stolen intellectual property.
You can read our full press release online here.
Read more reactions to the report from the Business Software Alliance, National Music Publishers’ Association, Copyright Alliance, and the Recording Industry Association of America.