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IFTA on online content theft and legitimate alternatives

The Independent Film & Television Alliance (IFTA) and a coalition of its Member companies today joined major broadband companies, the Recording Industry Association, A2IM and the Motion Picture Association of America to announce the launch of a jointly supported voluntary initiative to advise consumers about online content theft and legitimate alternatives.

The state-of-the-art system creating a common “Copyright Alerts” framework, which is similar to credit card fraud alerts, is designed to educate and notify Internet subscribers when their accounts have been identified as being misused for online content theft. This landmark collaboration through which ISPs will educate subscribers about content theft on their Internet accounts, protects consumers and copyright holders alike

IFTA and select member companies have issued the following statements:

“It’s extremely gratifying to see the music and film industry –independents and majors alike -- and ISPs unite in a time of crisis and work tirelessly together for a common goal,” said Jean Prewitt, IFTA President & CEO. “The only way to temper the spread of online content theft is by educating consumers about the problem and about the available legitimate sources of content. This voluntary program is unprecedented and we are eager to see the positive effects for independent companies and the industry overall.”
Barbara Mudge, President & Founder of IFTA-member company Worldwide Film Entertainment, LLC, noted, “Every day I experience the catastrophic effects content theft is having on the independents - it’s a real-life horror movie. Each person we can educate and steer away from unlawful services will have a meaningful impact, and this program could not have come soon enough.”
Rob Friedman, Co-Chairman and CEO of Summit Entertainment, an IFTA-member company, commented, “Content theft continues to be a threat to our business both here and abroad. Initiatives such as a common framework for ‘Copyright Alerts’ are a positive step toward both curbing the efforts of online content theft and educating consumers as to how their online accounts can be used by thieves to further their illegal activities.”

About The Independent Film & Television Alliance (IFTA)
The Independent Film & Television Alliance (IFTA) is the global trade association of the independent motion picture and television programming industry. Headquartered in Los Angeles, the organization represents and provides significant entertainment industry services to more than 150 member companies from 23 countries, consisting of independent production and distribution companies, sales agents, television companies, studio-affiliated companies, and financial institutions engaged in content finance.

Collectively, the Independent Film & Television Alliance’s members produce more than 400 independent films and countless hours of television programming each year and generate more than $4 billion in distribution revenues annually. The organization’s premiere event, the American Film Market, held in conjunction with AFI FEST, takes place every year in November in Santa Monica.

As the voice and advocate for the independent film and television industry worldwide, the Alliance speaks out on matters of critical importance and, where appropriate, actively lobbies governments around the world in regard to measures directly affecting the independent industry. For more information on IFTA and the American Film Market, please visit www.ifta-online.org.

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Chatelin Bruno
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