Tuesday, 19 April 2011

CINEMA STAFF REWARDED FOR PREVENTING PIRACY

This is something that just hit my in-box.  I was always a bit cynical about the chances of being caught recording a new film at the cinema.  This is only a small snapshot with the FACT/FDA awards but it does show that cinema staff do take this seriously.  There are images of the event at the bottom of the page.

11 employees from cinemas across the UK have been presented with awards totalling £2,900 for their efforts in preventing illegal recordings (so called ‘camcordings’) taking place.

The Federation Against Copyright Theft (‘FACT’) and the Film Distributors’ Association (‘FDA’) operate a training, prevention and reward scheme for all UK cinemas. Illegal recordings of films are the primary source for pirate copies worldwide - recordings are uploaded to the internet and made available within hours to millions of people. Film piracy in the UK alone costs legitimate businesses over half a billion pounds a year and directly threatens the jobs of tens of thousands of people who work across the film sector.

FACT works closely with cinema operators to ensure that staff are trained to detect and prevent such recordings, as well as assisting in raising awareness with police on this issue so they are able to assist when called to an incident.
  • 9 camcording incidents are represented
  • Police attended all of them
  • 2 incidents led to arrests
  • 7 incidents led to police cautions at the scene
  • 2 led to formal cautions in custody
11 members of cinema-staff are due to receive awards (there are 2 x joint rewards)

At a specially-convened ceremony at Paramount Pictures, London, each received a cheque for several hundred pounds for their part in thwarting attempts to record films at their cinema.

All present received a warm welcome and congratulations from FDA Chief Executive Mark Batey who thanked all the award recipients for their vigilance and use of night vision devices, especially when digital recording devices are not easy to spot.

FACT’s Director of Business, Jim Angell, said that no-one should be in any doubt about the increasing sophistication of those trying to record films, and the increasing difficulty that detecting them presented to cinema staff. The success of those present was therefore particularly worth celebrating, he said, adding:

"These rewards prove the ongoing commitment from everyone working in the film sector to combat piracy. A recording captured in a cinema is the primary source for illicit online files and pirate DVDs and cinema staff are on the front line of the fight; continuing to prevent such recordings in the UK. I am delighted to be able to acknowledge and reward their achievements."

Awards were presented to:
  • CALUM BARTOLI - Empire Newcastle
  • DOLLY BHATTI - Vue Birmingham
  • KERRY BURKES, OLIVER COLLS, JENNY GEARY & CHELSEA GORDON - Cineworld Bexleyheath
  • MD- MINHAZUR CHOWDHURY & AMINE MENADLI - Cineworld Wood Green
  • LIAM SLATER - Cineworld Ashton
  • GINA HAWKINS - Odeon Nuneaton
  • CARL LEWIS - Cineworld Wood Green
Each individual receiving a reward - in many cases matched by a similar amount from their employing company - did so as a result of the FDA-funded scheme available to any member of cinema staff involved in the successful apprehension of film thieves.
Further details on the scheme - and more information on the fight against film theft - can be found at www.fightfilmtheft.org.uk

About FACT
The Federation Against Copyright Theft is the UK’s leading trade organisation established to protect and represent the interests of audio-visual and sports rights owners against copyright and trademark infringements. Established in 1983, FACT works closely with statutory law enforcement agencies to combat the growth of online/internet based piracy of film and other forms of broadcast material as well as the continuing threat from pirate DVDs.
More information: www.fact-uk.org.uk

About FDA
Film Distributors’ Association is the trade body promoting the generic interests of UK theatrical film distributors. FDA’s membership of 22 companies accounts for 97% of UK cinemagoing.
More information: www.launchingfilms.com

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