Gaining On Piracy

UK police say they’re winning the fight against websites committing copyright crime against music and publishing.

Operation Creative, launched in the summer by City of London Police and with the support of the International Federation Of Phonographic Industries, has led to the suspension of some 40 sites, including some based outside Great Britain.

At the same time, an innovative three-month pilot designed to disrupt advertising revenues on infringing websites has seen a clear and positive trend, with a reduction in advertising from major household brands.

A detailed report looking at 61 websites over the course of the pilot, evidenced as profiting from advertising and operating without licenses from content creators, revealed that adverts from well-known brands fell by 12 percent.

Operation Creative began in the summer with a partnership between the City of London Police and several organizations dealing with the UK advertising industry.

The partnership also included the IFPI, the Federation Against Copyright Theft, the British Phonographic Industry and the Publishers Association. BPI chief exec Geoff Taylor said the early results from Operation Creative show that through working with the police and the online advertising industry, it’s beginning to disrupt the funding that sustains illegal websites.

IFPI chief exec Frances Moore said the pioneering partnership between PIPCU, rights holders and the advertising industry is a welcome development that has the potential to help make the internet a better place for legitimate businesses.

“Brands do not want their advertising misdirected onto sites where it may harm their reputation and Operation Creative will help address this problem,” she explained.