Body stages fresh war, new strategies against piracy
This time around, it is not going to be business as usual, as all the major copyright owners in Nigeria’s audio visual space, comprising affiliates of NCAP – Performing Musicians Employers Association of Nigeria (PMAN), Association of Movie Producers (AMP), Association of Nollywood Core Producers (ANCOP), Film Video Producers Association of Nigeria (FVPMAN), Yoruba Film Video Producers Association of Nigeria (YORFVPMAN), Online Distributors Association of Nigeria and Creative Designers Guild of Nigeria (CDGN), have come together for this purpose. These associations formed the new body in July to counter-attack the virus that has decimated the Nigerian audio-visual industry.
At a press briefing, one of the stakeholders, Executive Director, Pan-African Creative Economic Advisory group, Mr. Madu Chikwendu, said: “This body was formed because the thief was taking too long for the owner not to notice. The thief no longer comes in the night, but operates both during the day and in the night. This thief is amphibious and amoebic, operating both on land and at the sea in a shapeless manner, shifting forms, which brought the creative audio-visual industry to its knees. We no longer have other options now than to rise and fight or die.”
He continued: “This piracy comes in various forms; the most popular is counterfeiting of DVDs and VCDs. Other forms include illegal broadcast, downloading and streaming, exhibition and screening. Perpetrators range from the dreaded Alaba pirates to popular long distance transport companies, television and radio stations. The scope is both local and international.”
Chikwendu, however, explained that the fight, which is anchored on a tripod of enlightenment, would entail the education of infringers, stakeholders and the general populace on the nature, evils and consequences of piracy.
“With this, we hope engagement with infringers would persuade some of them to renounce the evil trade and embrace legitimate forms of distribution,” he said. “Strategies to achieve this include organising symposia for judges to pamphleteering at popular motor parks.
“Finally, a standing task force with national spread from the ward level to the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, will ensure that there would be no hiding place for the wicked. This will be our approach to enforcement.”
On ways to raise money for this cause, Chikwendu said: “Funding is critical when you consider that NCAP needs, at this initial stage, a minimum of N2 million yearly for its operations with at least N70 million for raiding pirates’ dens.”
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