Media & Entertainment Giants Align for Anti-Piracy Push


WASHINGTON D.C.: Time Warner, Viacom, Disney, News Corporation and Sony are among the entertainment, sports and media companies that have come together to lobby Congress to pass two different bills aimed at curbing online piracy.

Dozens of entertainment companies jointly sent an open letter to Congress yesterday urging the passage of the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and Preventing Real Online Threats to Economic Creativity and Theft of Intellectual Property Act (PROTECT IP). The letter is also running as an ad in national publications and major media outlets.

SOPA is scheduled for debate by the House Judiciary Committee tomorrow. PROTECT IP is currently with the Senate. If passed, both bills would expand the powers of the Department of Justice to reign in foreign websites dealing in the illegal use of content.

“Every day Internet criminals use illegal foreign websites to steal from New York companies and hardworking Americans,” the letter reads. “These illegal foreign websites are destroying American jobs and causing billions in lost revenue. They threaten the jobs of some of the best-known creative talent in the world, many of whom belong to New York guilds and unions. And they threaten the jobs of hundreds of thousands of musicians, songwriters, artists and professionals in entertainment companies, worldwide sports organizations and telecasters—in New York and across America.”

SOPA has drawn opposition from Internet giants such as Yahoo, Google, Facebook and the Consumer Electronics Association, saying that it would give the government too much power to shut down websites. These tech firms, along with a host of others, sent their own letter to Congress last month.