Flash drives eyed in new anti-piracy drive

NEW technologies are now studied to be included against the fight against piracy.

Lawyer Anselmo Adriano, chairperson of the Optical Media Board (OMB) during a recent forum in Baguio City, said a technical working group is now working for a draft which will regulate the use of internet, flash drives, and hard drives in downloading movies and music.

Adriano added a nationwide consultation would also ensue as soon as the draft is finished to get the support of the stakeholders and the people during the OMB General Conference and multi-sectoral assembly held at University of Baguio on June 29.

Piracy, according to OMB’s executive director lawyer Victor Padilla II, is the unauthorized duplication of film, music, or any legitimate recording.

Padilla said pirated optical media are usually bundled in multiple movies or music from different kinds of artists. To fight this, the OMB was created under the Republic Act No. 9239 or the Optical Media Act of 2003 in charge of protecting and upholding intellectual property rights in digital form. This includes the importation, exportation, acquisition, sale, or distribution.

Padilla said that optical and magnetic piracy is now a transnational and organized crime with national security implications which begs everyone’s concern.

OMB’s head of Licensing Unit Esperanza Coronel during the forum taught the audience how to recognize real and licensed CDs and DVDs from counterfeits.

She noted several characteristics of counterfeit products such as cheap, poorly printed labels, missing licensing agreements, registration cards, and manuals, are sold at flea markets and are not issued with official receipts.

OMB’s Chief of Legal Division Atty. Cyrus Valenzuela also explained the offences and penalties of people violating RA 9239 includes imprisonment of at least three years and a fine not less than P500,000.

Adriano asked participants not to buy counterfeit products and stressed “ang intellectual property rights ay hindi lang pangmayaman, kundi pang masa.”

He further explained by not buying original products, a lot of people would earn less and lose their jobs, equating to the decline of the economy and the destruction of creativity. (Arianne Jo Julaton, UP Baguio intern/SunStar Baguio)
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