Hollywood studios & guilds approach FCC with issues on piracy

MUMBAI: A broad coalition of entertainment industry guilds, unions and studios, including the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (AFTRA), Directors Guild of America (DGA), International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees, Moving Picture Technicians, Artists and Allied Crafts of the United States, Its Territories and Canada (IATSE), Screen Actors Guild (SAG), and Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA), combined forces to speak with one voice on the issue of Internet theft through a joint filing submitted to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).

The joint filing is in response to the FCC’s request for comments on a framework for broadband services, and addresses the possibility that the FCC will choose to reclassify the Internet as a telecommunications service subject to regulation under Title II.

Excerpts from the filing:

As creators of content, we realize that the theft of copyrighted works is the ultimate discouragement of content. The content protection measures that we have proposed only discourage the outright theft of copyrighted content, while protecting jobs and fostering creativity and American ingenuity. We believe that an open Internet offers tremendous promise for the proliferation of diverse audiovisual content, sound recordings, and myriad other forms of expression – it is those who break the law by exploiting these works without appropriately compensating their creators and financiers who discourage the creation of content.

The Guilds, Unions, and MPAA do not believe that Title II regulation is either necessary or desirable to achieve the public policy goals the Commission has articulated for broadband and an open Internet. But whether the Commission reclassifies under Title II or finds a new basis for ancillary jurisdiction under Title I, the Guilds, Unions, and MPAA believe the Commission’s ultimate goal remains a clear, enforceable set of rules defining an "open Internet" framework. Whether under the Title II rubric of “reasonable non-discrimination” or otherwise, the Commission must provide clear and unambiguous guidance so that BIAPs can design their networks to include innovative solutions to online theft without fear of liability.

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