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Telugu Film Industry & MPAA Ink Anti-Piracy MoU; Tracking Users

The Andhra Pradesh Film Chamber of Commerce (APFCC), the body that represents the Telugu Film Industry has inked an MoU with the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA), in a bid to curb film piracy, reports The Hindu. The report indicates that the two bodies intend to work in conjunction to fight piracy and exchange best practices. The MoU was inked through the Motion Picture Dist. Association (India) (MPDA), which is a wholly owned Indian subsidiary of the Motion Picture Association, and represents the interests of the American motion picture industry in India. While the implications of the MoU were not categorically specified, it could mean that in addition to the use of technology to find, report and block pirated content online, the MPAA could also track piracy of Telugu films in the US, both online and offline. The Andhra Pradesh Film Chamber of Commerce has Anti Video Piracy Cell, through which it claims to have assisted the police in arresting 5201 individuals till December 2010, in cases related to film piracy.

Interestingly, the Cell’s latest newsletter mentions that its Cyber Piracy wing has now ‘for a few months been tracking in real time, IP addresses of all users engaged in uploading/downloading/streaming movies belonging to various industries.‘ It had raided 6 locations with the state CID team and has published their names, IP addresses and locations.

Among other anti-piracy measures by Indian entertainment industry bodies, the Indian Music Industry (IMI), an industry consortium of 142 music ompanies, had recently obtained orders from the Calcutta High Court directing all Internet Service Providers (387 ISPs) to block 104 music sites (listed here).

The MPAA represents the American motion picture, home video and television industries in the United States and in other parts of the world. It has been critical of the Congress for halting bills like SOPA and PIPA, which were proposed to allow the US government to block access to user generated content sites through ISPs, stop search engines from linking to them, advertising networks and payment processing firms from transferring money to them, or even stop sites from linking to potentially infringing content, and thus exercise control over websites which are out of the jurisdiction of the United States.

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