What is Camcorder Piracy?
When someone enters a theater with any type of recording device — camcorder,
smartphone, voice recorder, etc. — and intentionally records or photographs any portion of the video or audio track of a movie, that person is engaging in camcorder piracy. Like stealing a DVD from the store, stealing a movie off the screen is illegal. Films camcorded when they are only available to the public in movie theaters (theatrical release) are often uploaded onto the Internet in a matter of days or even hours after their first public screening.
Many movie thieves sell the "master" recordings to "labs" where they are illegally duplicated into pirated optical discs, packaged, and prepared for sale on the black market in street markets around the world, on online auctions, or even websites within days after their original theatrical release.
WHY DO WE NEED TO STOP CAMCORDER PIRACY?
All forms of piracy hurt the entertainment industry, the economies of countries that make movies, and, in the end, consumers.
- Entertainment Industry — The average major motion picture cost $98 million to make and market domestically in 2004. Six out of ten movies never recoup their original investment. Making a movie is a very risky venture, and it is likely that fewer movies will be made if piracy continues to rob those who invest in making movies.
- Economic Impact — The movie industry is an economic engine that creates and provides jobs and contributes to the economies of countries that produce movies. Piracy hurts economies everywhere movies are sold, displayed or broadcast. Some countries have already experienced the complete shutdown of their own movie industry due to piracy. Camcorder piracy can drive out legitimate jobs of theater owners, video stores, AND their employees. Profits from this illicit activity often end up in the hands of members of organized criminal networks, gangs, and worse.
- Consumers — For consumers to continue to experience a large variety of high-quality movies, piracy must be controlled. The entertainment industry recognizes the potential of technology to deliver content in new and exciting ways. However, the looming threat of piracy can thwart technological innovation. If fewer movies are created as a result of piracy, we will all be adversely affected.