Davao City backs OMB’s anti-piracy campaign

THE Davao City Government supports the advocacy of the Optical Media Board (OMB) in suppressing media piracy in the country the agency launched its Davao Satellite Office (DSO) on Tuesday, July 11.

The agency’s first satellite office with the partnership of Department of Trade and Industry (DTI)-Davao Negosyo Center is housed inside Davao City Investment Promotion Center (DCIPC).

The OMB protects the intellectual property rights of all licensed optical and magnetic media by conducting inspections by itself or in coordination with other government agencies with or without prior notice of establishments or entities including those within the economic zones engaged in the activities.

Lawyer Elisa Lapiño, representing Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio during the launch, said the City Government believed that piracy is the parasite in the media industry, thus, it commits to take part in any intervention on the implementation of media piracy raids and confiscation.

OMB Chair lawyer Anselmo Adriano, however, said the satellite office will not yet be conducting raids and confiscations in the city until the National Government increases the board's budget by next year.

In 2016, Adriano said OBM confiscated pirated media worth P1.1 billion. For the first five months of 2017, he said, they already confiscated P530 million worth of pirated media mostly in Catbalogan, Samar.

"We only have 24 raiding personnel in Manila and it costs us a lot if we regularly fly them to other parts of the country for continuous inspections," Adriano said.

For five consecutive years, Adriano said National Government allotted them P50-million budget every year, which is only enough for the expenditures of the main office as well as the establishment of the three satellite offices this year, including the one in the city.

Pwersa ng Bayaning Atleta Partylist Representative Jericho Nograles, during the launch, said he and his father former House Speaker Prospero Nograles, will help find funds to support future operations of the satellite office in the city.

"If the expenditure program of the National Government fails to increase the budget of OMB next year, we will extend as much help as we can provide as we see the importance of curbing piracy violations in the country," Nograles said.

Adriano said OMB will also launch a second satellite office in Cebu city in August and another one in Baguio City in December, hoping that the Philippines would become a media piracy-free country on the coming years.
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