Partners against piracy launches to combat content piracy

MultiChoice Namibia and its partners launched the Partners against Piracy (PAP) initiative in Windhoek. The partnership aims to address content piracy, which has far-reaching consequences for the creative sector.

NIPDB Manager of MSME Ecosystem Optimization, Claudia Capelao, highlighted the severe economic impact of piracy and underscored the need for robust laws and stringent enforcement to combat this menace.

“Piracy results in a massive financial drain on the creative economy, affecting not just the creators but the entire support ecosystem. It is a significant threat, but with collective effort and innovative solutions, it can be combated. Protecting entrepreneurs and the creative industry is crucial for preserving cultural heritage and ensuring future growth,” Capelao stated

The event featured a panel discussion with industry experts, including Yolanda Kalenga, Chief Legal Officer at the Office of the Attorney-General and Admitted Legal Practitioner at the High Court of Namibia; Ainna Kaundu, BIPA Intellectual Property Executive; Wycliffe Kauuova, MultiChoice Namibia Field Services and Piracy Officer; Efraim Vilho, CC Hub Community Manager; and Hertha Katjivena, Namibia Film Commission Media Officer.

Kaundu emphasised the moral dimension of piracy, noting, “The reason that we are able to watch free movies or distribute music on platforms such as WhatsApp is not necessarily because of technology, but because our moral compass does not tell us that something is wrong with this. In a global setting, there is a gravitation towards seeing piracy as a serious crime. This is not just about unauthorised usage or distribution of content – it takes away the incentive of one having to invest in creativity.”

The panel also discussed existing laws to prevent piracy, the need for more comprehensive data on piracy in Namibia, and MultiChoice Namibia’s successful anti-piracy initiatives. They stressed that ethical content consumption is vital for sustaining the creative industry and supporting the aspirations and livelihoods of numerous individuals.

Efraim Vilho pointed out the adverse effects of piracy on startups, stating, “Every startup thrives on innovation and creativity. That’s how they survive. Piracy poses a threat. Startups need to understand that the unauthorised sharing of products in the market affects your market competitiveness and leads to revenue loss. Protect your intellectual property.”

MultiChoice Namibia Managing Director Roger Gertze thanked all partners for their insights and contributions.

“MultiChoice, as an industry leader, recognises the profound impact of such partnerships and their ability to connect diverse audiences on a global scale,” Gertze remarked.

In light of the upcoming EURO 2024 tournament, Gertze highlighted MultiChoice’s role as the official broadcast partner, celebrating the event’s spirit of sportsmanship. He reiterated MultiChoice Namibia’s commitment to combating piracy, stating, “Studies have shown that pirated streams and downloads disrupt every facet of the production value chain, directly threatening those who create and deliver content, and MultiChoice Namibia remains resolute in its determination to combat this threat.”

Launching Partners against Piracy in Namibia marks a pivotal step in safeguarding the country’s creative economy and supporting the growth and sustainability of its cultural industries.