Asia wide anti piracy sweep planned

MUMBAI: The Motion Picture Association (MPA) has launched Operation Tripod, an aggressive anti-piracy enforcement initiative scheduled to run through 30 June 2007 in 13 countries and territories across the Asia-Pacific region.

While targeting the production, distribution and sales of pirated movies throughout the region, as well as the export of pirated optical discs around the world, Operation Tripod will focus on the illegal camcording of newly released titles in cinemas. Intellectual property theft has become an important revenue stream for organised criminal gangs, which dominate the pirate movie trade throughout much of the world, and the sourcing of newly released titles within hours or days of theatrical release is a huge priority for these organisations, says a release.

During the past 12 months, 20 instances of camcording have been reported or forensically matched to cinemas in the Asia-Pacific region, says the release. “Worldwide, camcorded copies comprise around 90 per cent of early release pirate discs,” says MPA Senior Vice President and Regional Director, Asia-Pacific Mike Ellis. “Illegal camcording is a menace that threatens the future of the movie industry, and we are determined to prevent its spread in the Asia-Pacific region and to ensuring that movies are protected, not stolen, in the environments in which they are shown.”

“During Operation Tripod, the MPA will work closely with law enforcement authorities and governments around the region to find and punish those involved in the manufacture, distribution and sale of pirated movies. We will also be working with theater exhibitors around the region to implement anti-camcording security measures, and to take action against illegal camcorders to ensure that the first link in the supply chain is cut.” “Movie piracy is not a victimless crime,” says Ellis.

Operation Tripod operations will be conducted in Australia, China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, New Zealand, the Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan and Thailand, the release states.