There has been a spike in online consumption of film, television and other content since the beginning of the COVID pandemic, and unfortunately some of this has been coming from sites offering such content illegally, even for a fee.
The Motion Picture Association’s EMEA president and managing director Stan McCoy discussed this problem in a recent video interview with Ideas Matter, and explained why it is important to “Get It Right”—to access online content from legitimate sites—particularly during the pandemic.
What is Get It Right?
“Get it Right is a campaign that we've been running for several years in the UK, whose sole objective is to remind people, and young people especially, that the ecosystem that supports creators and the content that we all love is one that depends on legitimate sites,” McCoy told Ideas Matter in our video interview.
During the pandemic, the Get It Right campaign has been trying to connect audiences, particularly young audiences in the UK, with some of the creators they love. Artists like Munya Chiwawa and Krept & Konan are shown in Get It Right videos enjoying great content online and encouraging people to support the content they love and to “get it right” online.
“The goal is to remind people that the content that we love is part of what's helping to keep us all sane during this very stressful period of time,” says McCoy. “The more we can support the creators of that content, the better.”
What is happening with illegal content online during the pandemic?
Unfortunately, illegitimate services have been trying to exploit the situation of having a larger audience spending more time at home, says McCoy. He points out that some of these are massive, commercial scale pirate sites that are offering special discounts and incentives to get people to sign up—"a bit of profiteering on the back of the global public health crisis by these unscrupulous actors.”
The MPA has worked with police to close substantial pirate sites like this, for example, in France and Germany. In doing this, McCoy says, the industry generally gets good collaboration from a lot of partners in the enforcement and business ecosystem. More needs to be done, however, as some providers of business infrastructure online don't know their business customers, even pirate customers buying multi-million dollar business infrastructure services, says McCoy.
Why is it important to get content from legitimate sites online?
The reason to care about getting content from a legitimate site is very simple at bottom, says McCoy—it’s jobs: “It's the kind of jobs that young people want in the UK and right across Europe. Working in the film and television industry is great, and sustaining those jobs is something that requires the existence of the legitimate ecosystem of people out there consuming content through legitimate sites.”
McCoy explains that the film industry supports two million jobs across Europe, directly and indirectly, 51% of which are in the UK, France and Germany. The sector contributed €46.9 billion to Europe’s GDP in Europe in 2018.
“These people all directly or indirectly owe their livelihoods to getting content through legitimate venues—going to the cinema and going to legitimate sites online,” says McCoy. “Piracy directly detracts from the livelihoods of those people.”
McCoy encourages viewers to check out Get It Right from a Genuine Site. “You'll find some great videos and resources there that will help to educate your family and your friends about why they should be consuming from legitimate sites!”
Ideas Matter’s video interview with Stan McCoy can be viewed here: https://vimeo.com/488418798
The Get It Right site can be viewed here: www.getitrightfromagenuinesite.org .