Illustrating the belief that history shows time and again we must never forget the past but use it to build our future, Machiavelli also said that ‘whosoever desires constant success must change his conduct with the times.’ This passage opened the piracy section of the 2023 Asia Video Industry Report by the Asia Video Industry Association (AVIA), which has undergone some changes itself over the past year.
Among those changes is the goal to “lead the protection of its members’ content online in the Asia Pacific region,” by AVIA’s Coalition Against Piracy (CAP). CAP’s mission is built around the four pillars of Collaboration; Research & Technology; Enforcement and Disruption, and Engagement and Outreach, and espousing values to be Collaborative; Transparent; Strategic; Innovative, and Impactful.
2022 initiatives by AVIA and CAP include:
- Establishment of the Video Coalition of the Philippines in collaboration with Globe, GMA Network, Inc., Cignal TV, Inc, KROMA Entertainment and Smart Communications, Inc,
- “Time to Compromise”, a CAP-commissioned report into how cybercriminals use ads to compromise devices through piracy Web sites and apps
- The first annual report on consumer attitudes to piracy across the region, including country-by-country breakdowns and a wealth of data; based on research commissioned by AVIA CAP and conducted by YouGov
- An update to AVIA’s MagiCAP piracy analytics platform, essential to CAP’s work in its identifying of pirate sites of concern around the region, and particularly in tracking piracy traffic and superbly illustrating the impact of blocking.
The YouGov reports identified something that AVIA had presumed for some time without having any hard evidence of, that social media and messaging apps were the most popular forms of accessing pirate content around the region. Telegram in particular had developed into a platform of some concern, said AVIA.
Enforcement and Disruption
AVIA CAP’s rolling site blocking strategy has achieved tangible results, including
- Blocking of more than 3,500 illegal websites in Indonesia as traffic to legitimate sites increased in their place
- A blocking order in Singapore, of 30 sites and close to 150 associated URLs being obtained in Q1. The order was a ‘dynamic’ one and in Q3 AVIA informed ISPs of another 99 associated URLs that were subsequently blocked.
Following YouGov’s identification of social media platforms as a key source of accessing pirated content, in 2022 CAP also cranked up its engagement with the two biggest technology companies in this space, Google and Meta; and has regular calls with each company.
CAP also brought on a new General Manager, Matthew Cheetham, replacing Aaron Herps, who now heads up Content Protection for APAC for the Premier League.
Download The Asia Video Industry Report 2023, by AVIA
Why it matters
“Piracy continues to threaten our foundations and we continue to combat it,” said AVIA CEO Louis Boswell. “Working to understand the evolution of the problems, measuring our success in containing it, working with governments to give us better tools and protections to allow legitimate content to prosper and building coalitions among our local and international members to present a common front, are all key priorities,” he said.