GIPC Statement on “Operation In Our Sites”
Today, the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York (SDNY) announced the launch of "Operation In Our Sites," a new initiative aimed fighting counterfeiting and piracy over the Internet. These actions should be commended as they will play a pivotal role in cracking down on the internet piracy that is harming our economy and costing American jobs.
Online piracy, or the digital theft of movies, music, books and other content, is a job-killing crime. There are thousands of rogue websites--many of them overseas--that take part in this illegal activity. Studies indicate that every year global music piracy leads to a loss of over 71,000 jobs, $12.5 billion in economic growth, and $2.7 billion in workers' earnings. The U.S. entertainment software industry estimated losses of over $3 billion in 2007 due to piracy. And piracy contributed to a loss of $18.2 billion in the global film industry in 2005. Unless something is done to address online piracy, these numbers will only get exponentially worse as Internet access expands and broadband speeds increase.
Stopping on-line theft is a major component of the Obama Administration’s National IP Enforcement Strategy, and “Operation In Our Sites” is an example of the kind of initiatives we would like to see from the implementation of this plan.