Former IP Adviser to PM Reiterates Need for International Anti-Piracy Strategy

Mike Weatherley, the Conservative Member of Parliament for Hove and Portslade, and former Intellectual Property Adviser to the Prime Minister, who earlier in the year published a report examining the advertising revenue on pirate websites, has reiterated the need for a co-ordinated international approach to address piracy.

The recent cyber-attack on Sony and the theft of a number of films before their theatrical release has highlighted the on-going problem facing film makers. Mike has published three seminal reports on IP issues, namely search engines and advertising revenue on pirate sites, with his third report on ‘Copyright Education and Awareness’.

Mike also backed the recent arrest of two individuals by officers from the national Police Intellectual Property Crime Unit (PIPCU) who are believed to be responsible for leaking the new The Expendables 3 movie online. For more information on the story, click here.

Commenting, Mike said: “Piracy is a huge international problem. The recent cyber-attack on Sony and subsequent release of films to illegal websites is just one high-profile example of how criminals exploit others’ Intellectual Property. Unfortunately, the theft of these films – and their subsequent downloads – has been facilitated by web-hosting companies and, ultimately, ISPs who do have to step-up and take some responsibility.”

Mike added: “Following the money is a sensible strategy that time and again leads back to the advertising revenue that criminals receive as a result of hosting illegal material. This funding stream has to be tackled and will require a co-ordinated approach with international crime agencies. However, we must recognise that this is being driven by consumer demand, which I hope, with education and the proliferation of innovative new steaming services, will change over time in favour of legitimate sources.”