Copyright crimefighters FACT change tack after Hollywood calls The Terminator

Relaunched anti-piracy body to focus on games, music and leisure

Terminator head

British IP crimefighter FACT has "pivoted" after the Motion Picture Association cut half of the UK body's funding.

The Federation Against Copyright Theft has been fighting TV and movie piracy on behalf of big audiovisual operations like Hollywood Studios and Sky, work that includes bringing private prosecutions. But earlier this year, the major studios signalled a change in enforcement strategy which will now focus on the MPA office out of Brussels, we understand. FACT was a casualty.

Kieron Sharp, director of FACT, told us the organisation would now seek to work with smaller audiovisual producers and non-AV IP sectors such as games, music and leisure. He said he'd had to turn down working with some of these before, as they'd found FACT's studio-centric membership structure "inflexible".

Prominent private prosecutions in recent years include SurfTheChannel.com. More recently, FACT helped bust a fake Sky decoder card ring, which had netted the felons almost a million quid.

Although OTT and cord cutting are the big market trends, leading to a proliferation of low-cost ways of getting TV and movies legally, the DIY pirate underground never goes away. The past two years have seen an "epidemic" of pirate TV devices and software, typically running over Kodi (formerly XBMC), an open-source media player. These include pay-for pirate services.

How Hollywood can police this more effectively from Brussels is a mystery. Sky likes to do its own enforcement. ®


Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2017