The Kenya Copyright Board (KECOBO) on Thursday launched a historic multi stakeholder awareness program, Partners Against Piracy (PAP) to help fight the piracy menace countrywide.
Kenya is ranked amongst the countries with the highest rate of piracy in the world and tops the list in Africa for content piracy especially over the internet and other digital means.
PAP is a joint initiative by various stakeholders led by the KECOBO and International data security firm, Irdeto among others and has been established with the purpose of educating Kenyans about the unintended consequences which threaten the very lives of Kenyan communities and society at large.
The anti-piracy public awareness campaign has been launched to educate the public and raise awareness about the impact of content piracy activities on the creative sector.
While launching the Program, Edward Sigei, KECOBO Executive Director, stated that no single stakeholder can address this issue successfully on their own and as such a collaborative effort from stakeholders, including policy makers, law enforcement, media, business and community partners across Kenya and indeed the continent, is required to curb these illegal activities that are costing our economy and endangering the lives of our communities.
“As economies and cultures are drawn closer together and more inter-connected through global networks of trade, capital flows and spread of technology, so is the rise of content piracy,” said Sigei.
He noted that the rise of technology accessibility has played a critical factor in illegal content sharing by providing both a more complicated and simultaneously easier environment for would-be pirates to operate in.
In a recent report by Irdeto, the world leader in digital platform security, content piracy is costing among others, governments, sports and the creative industry an estimated 50 billion US dollars globally.
Sigei said that this illegal practice takes many forms across Africa and globally from illegal screening and streaming, pirated DVDs and storage devices, cable and signal piracy among others.
“The Partners Against Piracy campaign is a three-pronged approach: Public Education, Punitive Measures and Partnerships. The Kenyan Government and Regulatory partners understand the impact that content piracy has on the Kenyan economy and communities and are committed to addressing this issue both from a policy and a policing standpoint,” he said.
“We are proud to be partnering in this campaign to shed light on and educate our communities about the dangers of content piracy,” Sigei added, while reassuring stakeholders that KECOBO, Irdeto and the Kenya law enforcement agencies will continue working together to ensure sustainable partnerships that will decisively deal with this scourge by shining a light on content piracy.
By Gworo Alice