Music, TV Industries Call For Stronger Intellectual Property Protections

A trade group found that Russia, China, and other countries aren't adequately protecting copyrights in the global digital distribution of music and video.
Music and television industry groups are calling for stricter protections for intellectual property in light of an annual report showing that Russia, China, and other countries fail to provide adequate copyright protections.

The International Intellectual Property Alliance said in a recent report that Russia and China present continuing problems with respect to global digital distribution of music and video.

The Recording Industry Association of America, the American Association of Independent Music, the American Federation of Musicians, the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists, and the National Music Publishers Association issued a joint statement this week urging the U.S. government and others to take action. The group said that current economic problems make it more important than ever to ensure that artists don't face unfair competition.

"The copyright industries generally, and the music community in particular, are among America's most competitive sectors, and our contribution to the public welfare goes well beyond our economic contributions," they said in the statement. "We convey aspects of America that entertain, that reflect our diversity, and that showcase our country's creativity."

They said that "the piracy of America's creative genius" threatens music distribution and the livelihoods of those in the music industry, while allowing illegal enterprises to profit.

The group called on global leaders and Internet service providers to develop and implement policies and practices to fight organized, international "criminal syndicates."

"Even more importantly, global leaders must ensure that their legal regimes do not permit or encourage willful blindness on the part of companies that provide access to infringing materials," the group said. "ISPs in particular must be encouraged to play their part in preventing the use of their networks for the distribution of infringing materials. If legitimate companies are permitted to operate services that effect one of the greatest misappropriations ever witnessed, then there is little hope for creators to earn a living from their creations, or for America's creative sector to continue to drive this country's economic performance."

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