UK: Two years on, Piracy agreement between industry and government shows results

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In 2018, the UK Intellectual Property Office established the Creative Industries Sectors Deal with companies in the media, entertainment and Internet sectors, “to further enhance the means to fight piracy on social media platforms, ensure that participants are aware of all existing measures available to block or remove infringements, and identify new policies, systems and practices that can be introduced to further reduce piracy online.”

In May, the British Phonographic Industry has reported that voluntary round-tables conducted by the initiative have made progress.

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Accomplishments include:

  • New policies by Facebook and YouTube, in process of implementation, to help prevent users from abusing their platforms
  • Facebook has instituted policies and procedures to prevent links to piracy sites
  • YouTube has increased its API allowances to help rights-holders deal with infringement at scale; Facebook is doing similar
  • Rights owners are advising Facebook and YouTube on how to improve their respective content recognition systems
  • Platforms are working together and with rights owners toward harmonizing their policies and methods to identify and counteract repeat infringement

Additional practices and countermeasures are detailed in the BPI press release

Further background was reported in an article by Music Week

Why it matters

Progress is slow but deliberate, and demonstrates the importance of an ‘ecosystem’ approach to anti-piracy.

“The collaborative social media roundtable process facilitated by the IP Office has proven to be a powerful model for educating stakeholders on Facebook’s systems to address piracy and for developing new policies that meet all stakeholders’ needs,” said Nicola Mendelsohn, VP EMEA for Facebook. “We are grateful to the IP Office for its leadership and the earnest and solution-oriented manner in which the creative rightsholders approached the roundtable discussions.” (quoted from the above-linked article in Music Week).

While this initiative wasn’t reported by an organization whose name has the word ‘video’ in it, its participants include the English Premier League and the Motion Picture Association; both of which produce and distribute video programming and are highly motivated to stem piracy.

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