Online piracy is a huge deal to entertainment companies in Hollywood and elsewhere. Online piracy is said to be responsible for a large loss of revenue for these entertainment companies and now they want to fight back harder. A pretty large swath of entertainment giants has gotten together to form the Alliance for Creativity and Entertainment (ACE) where they will collaborate to battle online piracy. ACE says they are dedicated to protecting the dynamic legal market for creative content and reducing piracy.
The 30 entertainment companies involved in this new initiative are: Amazon, AMC Networks, BBC Worldwide, Bell Canada and Bell Media, Canal+ Group, CBS Corporation, Constantin Film, Foxtel, Grupo Globo, HBO, Hulu, Lionsgate, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM), Millennium Media, NBCUniversal, Netflix, Paramount Pictures, SF Studios, Sky, Sony Pictures Entertainment, Star India, Studio Babelsberg, STX Entertainment, Telemundo, Televisa, Twentieth Century Fox, Univision Communications Inc., Village Roadshow, The Walt Disney Company, and Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.
However, as more creative content moves online, piracy poses a continuing threat to creators, consumers, and the economy. Films and television shows can often be found on pirate sites within days – and in many cases hours – of release. Last year, there were an estimated 5.4 billion downloads of pirated wide release films and primetime television and VOD shows using peer-to-peer protocols worldwide. There were also an estimated 21.4 billion total visits to streaming piracy sites worldwide across both desktops and mobile devices in 2016.
Piracy also puts consumers at risk. One in three pirate sites target consumers with malware that can lead to a range of problems including identify theft and financial loss, according to a December 2015 report by Digital Citizens Alliance.
By bringing together global creative companies producing all forms of content, ACE will expand ongoing, cooperative efforts to reduce the prevalence of online piracy. ACE will draw upon the global antipiracy resources of the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) in concert with the internal antipiracy expertise of the ACE coalition members. Specifically, ACE will conduct research, work closely with law enforcement to curtail illegal pirate enterprises, file civil litigation, forge cooperative relationships with existing national content protection organizations, and pursue voluntary agreements with responsible parties across the internet ecosystem.
Online piracy isn’t anything new and the fight, at times, seems futile for these companies. While this new effort may find ways to shut doors and prevent some piracy, I don’t think it will ever truly go away. The internet has a funny way of having its way and even large corporations must accept the way of things. That doesn’t mean they shouldn’t try, just that there is bound to be piracy no matter what measures are taken.