Movie biz targets P-to-P pirates

Following the example of the music business the movie industry is targeting individual peer-to-peer pirates with an advertising campaign currently running in cinemas and on television across the U.S.

The ads, which can be viewed at, are designed to show the pirates how their activities affect the 'little guys' in the movie business, hoping to shift attention away from the million dollar grossing studios and stars.

Rich Taylor of the Motion Picture Association of America (Miaa), which is running the campaign, told U.S. news site The Pittsburgh Channel: "I think (the public) doesn't get that (movie piracy) is not a victimless crime. They think the only people impacted are those on the red carpet who have plenty of money".

The Miaa has long targeted more traditional pirates, selling bootlegged videos of blockbusters, but now it is realising the treat posed by peer-to-peer movie swappers. It estimates that the U.S. motion picture industry loses around US$3bn a year to pirates, but this figure does not include the losses from internet piracy as they are too hard to calculate.

But the ads are designed to show that these losses are not just hitting the fat cats of the industry and feature a whole host of people who work in movies, such as cinema staff, set painters and musicians.

They give four reasons why people shouldn't pirate movies. Firstly, punters are told they are cheating themselves as the quality of pirated movies are poor and that money lost in cinema takings means less films can be made. Secondly, pirates threaten the livelihood of the 500,000 ordinary Joes who work in the business. Thirdly, the ads claim that by swapping files on a peer-to-peer network you compromise the security of your PC and leave yourself open to legal action by making yourself "a distribution source for illegal downloading of movies". Finally, you are breaking the law.

This last point is one on which, so far, the movie industry has not been as tough as the music business. The Recording Industry Artists Association (Riaa) is using the Digital Millennium Copyright Act to bring legal action against around 75 people per day, including individual file swappers. So far the Miaa has stuck to going after the big guys -- those services set up to facilitate movie piracy, but Taylor says that it still considers pursuing individuals as an option.

In a separate move, designed to keep itself and its employees safe from such legal action, AOL Time Warner Inc. has taken steps to stop its staff from indulging in peer-to-peer file swapping. In an internal memo issued this week it said it plans to scan networks, desktops and laptops to check for peer-to-peer software and MP3 audio files, put in a firewall to stop P2P software from being downloaded, remove all P2P or unlicensed software, take disciplinary action against persistent offenders.

In the current climate of P2P persecution, we can only imagine that many such companies will follow suit.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Ursula Seymour

PC Advisor
Show Comments



Sansai 6-Outlet Power Board + 4-Port USB Charging Station

Learn more >

Victorinox Werks Professional Executive 17 Laptop Case

Learn more >



Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles


PCW Evaluation Team

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?