NZ calls on consumers to make every day World IP Day


Mumbai: New Zealand is marking World Intellectual Property Day with the culmination of a nationwide IPR competition for students and the launch of an anti-movie piracy trailer featuring local hit Sione’s Wedding.
The events were coordinated by the New Zealand Federation Against Copyright Theft (NZFACT), representing the Motion Picture Association in New Zealand, and were designed to raise awareness among students and consumers of the economic damage caused by intellectual property theft.
World IP Day is an initiative of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) and has been celebrated annually on April 26 since its inception in 2001. The day is primarily a chance to reflect on the importance of human innovation and celebrate the important role that IP plays in our daily lives.
On 16 April, NZFACT executive director Tony Eaton joined New Zealand’s associate commerce minister Judith Tizard and other creative industry representatives at a prize-giving ceremony celebrating the creativity and hard work of young New Zealanders.
The winner of the 2007 Respecting Creativity Competition, Yang Gan, who was a Year 13 student at Hutt International Boys’ School at the time, designed a logo and poster with a message encouraging people to respect copyright laws.  
Tizard said, "Movies like Sione’s Wedding provide enjoyment to millions of people and give a real boost to the New Zealand economy, directly through the jobs they create and indirectly through the tourists they attract to visit us. We should all respect copyright – by saying "No!" to piracy. Like stealing from someone’s home or business, piracy is theft."
"We were delighted for Sione’s Wedding to be used in this anti-piracy trailer and sincerely hope that it helps persuade consumers to say "No!" to piracy," said Sione’s Wedding producer John Barnett. "The New Zealand movie industry provides jobs for thousands of Kiwis, and they suffer when pirates steal our creations."
On 25 August, 2006, the Manukau District Court sentenced 42-year-old John Houston to two years imprisonment for illegally copying and distributing pirated movies. This was the first ever prison sentence awarded for movie piracy under New Zealand’s Copyright Act. Houston had four hundred and eighty-six movie "masters" on a server at his home, one of which was Sione’s Wedding.
"People pay a bit more attention to piracy and other IP issues on World Intellectual Property Day," said NZFACT’s Tony Eaton. "However, piracy causes massive damage every day to the legitimate movie production and distribution industries here in New Zealand, and throughout the world. As more consumers become aware of the damage piracy causes, I believe more consumers will say "No!" to piracy – every day, not just on World Intellectual Property Day."