What our law say about piracy in the age of streaming - Metroscene Mag

Jun 25, 2021 0 comments



Streaming has gradually become a part of the norm for consuming media. Its skyrocketing popularity is due to its on-the-go convenience and the wide catalogue it offers. Containing well-beloved shows for all ages, from sitcoms like Friends and How I met your mother to original series like Money Heist and Black Mirror, all of which you can enjoy with a monthly subscription to Netflix.


Netflix currently remains as one of the most popular streaming platforms globally. But despite its popularity, there are many contenders to the streaming service industry, namely Disney+ and Amazon Prime—each providing content solely exclusive to them, with shows like the Mandalorian and the Boys respectively.


With each of these platforms having something exciting to offer, this now leaves the audience with two options: subscribe to each of these streaming platforms to access these shows, or download them illegally. 


A cheaper option


A recent survey by the Asia Video Industry Association shows that 49% of Filipinos indulge in piracy, and 47% cancels their subscriptions to Subscription Videos on Demand (SVOD). Despite numerous government attempts to block torrent sites and countless PSAs such as Globe’s #PlayItRight program informing the ills of piracy and creative theft, the issue remains at large.


The primary reason why piracy is so prevalent is because of its universal accessibility. It serves as a cheaper alternative for a movie ticket or a monthly subscription and can even provide you access to shows not available in your country with a single click on the internet. 


The problem of "too much"


As technology advances, so does the way media is produced and consumed. Today's television landscape has shifted from a live audience to primarily a streaming audience, and incidentally, this has ultimately led to the overabundance of content— making it easier for online pirates to create unauthorized copies of TV shows, Movies, Music, and etc. 



Piracy Law 


The steady growth of the streaming service, innovative as it may be, has unintentionally contributed to the sporadic growth of piracy. However, many may not know it, but Filipinos can be punished for buying bootlegs or downloading videos, music, and other copyrighted files. 


According to the CyberCrime Prevention Act of 2012, acquiring any digital copy of any copyrighted material is punishable up to Php 200,000 (US$4,470) to Php 500,000 (US$11,175) and six to 20 years in prison. You can read the official article here



━━ Written By  Juan Carlos Felipe G. Montenegro
━━  Art By Bea Reyes


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