Singapore: ISPs block 99 piracy sites, adding to 30 blocked in February

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On behalf of requests by BBC Studios, Discovery Communications, LaLiga, the Premier League and TVB International, internet service providers (ISPs) in Singapore have blocked 99 domains associated with 30 illegal streaming sites first blocked in February 2022.  The companies making the request are members of the Coalition Against Piracy (CAP), an initiative of the Asia Video Industry Association (AVIA).

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The block effectively negates efforts by the illegal sites to circumvent the terms of the “dynamic” injunction granted by a Singapore High Court Order in February 2022, to block domains associated redirected from the initial 30 sites.

Dramatic results

Site blocking legislation has proven to be effective: legislation passed in 2019 by Malaysia cut consumer access to illegal sites by 64% by 2020.  Users of illicit streaming devices went down by 61% over the same period.  Similar results have occurred in other countries in the region where similar legislation has passes; with AVIA’s support.

As for Singapore, a recent study on the online content viewing behavior there, commissioned by AVIA’s CAP and conducted by YouGov, found that more than one third of Singaporean consumers were spending more time watching free streaming services because of piracy streaming services being blocked by the government, and more than twenty percent have subscribed to legitimate services as a result of site blocking.

Why it matters

“This latest block once again shows the impact of an efficient and effective site blocking regime in combatting illegal streaming sites,” said CAP’s General Manager, Matthew Cheetham.   “Tools such as site blocking, when used efficiently and effectively, are very powerful in combatting online piracy and countering the damage and harm it causes,” he said.

AVIA has been instrumental in advocating site blocking legislation at national levels, as an anti-piracy countermeasure.

Teamwork helps

Site blocking is only one part of CAP’s comprehensive strategy to combat online piracy in Singapore, and around the region. Mr. Cheetham noted, “In addition to blocking, it’s vital that all players in the content ecosystem work together to combat online piracy and we are pleased to see this gathering momentum around the region from industry players, governments, and intermediaries to recognise that piracy is incredibly damaging to industry and economies, and very harmful to consumers.”

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