National Arts Council, law enforcement agencies and creative industry leaders have launched an Anti-Piracy Campaign dubbed Partners Against Piracy (PAP), an initiative that directs resources in the fight against rampant content theft in Zambia.
The campaign, which is a collaborative initiative between government agencies, distributors, content creators and rights owners, seeks to educate and inform the public at large about the effects of piracy to the industry and the dangers of engaging in this behaviour as well as the real consequences of revenue losses by government, the local creative economy, business and foreign direct investment linked to copyright breach, due to piracy.
Speaking at the launch of the campaign, Minister of Tourism and Arts, Permanent Secretary Patrick Lungu said the ministry was saddened by the statistics of the high levels of piracy particularly of local creative content in Zambia.
“The knowledge industry is bleeding due to rampant piracy, which in its basic understanding is theft – plain and simple. Piracy does not just affect the artists, it affects their families, it affects local communities and businesses as well as our government’s ability to deliver on its mandate. With the coming of the digital era, piracy has become even more prevalent and seems to be accepted as normal behaviour for many people. This is unacceptable and we need to fight this with all the energy and resources at our disposal,” said Mr Lungu.
“The monetisation of the arts and related industries sector will encourage more creativity and innovation which are much needed in the current economic climate, which has seen the global economy shrink due to the ongoing pandemic.”
National Arts Council (NAC), Director Maanka Chipindi said piracy was a serious scourge that had implications on everyone.
“This is an important initiative at various levels because it’s timely and we have not talked about piracy for a long time. This initiative gives us an importunity to reflect people’s minds on the negative impact of piracy. In this campaign, we are showing to the public and everyone that an act of piracy is not a simple and innocent thing but a serious issue that has serious implications on everyone,” said Mr Chipindi.
Meanwhile, National Association for Media Arts (NAMA), President Mr Lottie Siame said: “We are excited to be part of the Partners Against Piracy (PAP) initiative as it enhances the collaboration between different segments of the industry to fight the scourge of piracy.”
“The creative industry has the potential to be a massive economic growth engine in Zambia, but this growth potential is threatened by piracy. The delivery of legal creative content is growing but it is unfortunate that this is being undermined by a surge in the sale of pirated movies, music and artistic work,” said Mr Siame.
The PAP campaign seeks to influence industry leaders to create a legal framework and reach a consensus on the best effective approach to counter piracy in Zambia.
Pirates are profiting from the hard work of talented creators, entertainment companies and industries, denying these industries benefits from their work while exposing consumers to dangerous malware.
The campaign has attracted various organisation including Irdeto, ZAMCOPS, Patent and Company Registration Agency (PACRA), Zambia Police Service, journalists, film and music artists.