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Securing your Content: Strategies Against Video Piracy

Whether it's a comedy show, a concert, or a film screening certain production companies are going to request no photographs, video, or audio recordings be taken at their event. We are going to dive into why that is and if are job requires it; How do we enforce it?

Video piracy takes place when a show or film is produced by photos, video, or audio without proper authorization from the rights holder. Often, company producers will sell video rights to another party. For example, a comedy show may be doing their show for a streaming service like Netflix therefore they don't want their show being placed on the internet by other parties. This is also known as copyright infringement.

Copyright disclaimers are not required. Any disclaimer, announcement, or notification is simply a courtesy. However, with no disclaimer it's harder to prove and a violator can simply state their innocence by "I didn't no." So any notification makes it easier to enforce. Piracy can lead to civil liability or criminal penalties.

Big Picture: Piracy is not a victimless crime. The entertainment industry loses billions of dollars each year due to these copyright infringements. This puts jobs and careers at risk. The entertainers lose royalties. A bad copy or reproduction can be perceived as the real thing tarnishing reputations due to inferior quality.

Some shows like the Dave Chappelle concerts require phones to be in a Yondr pouch. How does it work? When patrons arrive at a venue they put their phones and/or smart watches in a case which is secured. They can gain access to their phone but only by a representative that can unlock the pouch. Yes, people can sneak in an extra phone. Phone's aren't illegal to possess and venues may not necessarily deny you access with the phone. But, if you are caught using the phone you will likely be ejected from the show after deleting any images of the show that you captured.

When the James Bond Movie "Spectre" was releasing it's first worldwide screening in the UK night-vision goggles were utilized in an attempt to stop pirating. These night-vision devices can generate clear images in dark areas like a movie theater. If you don't want to look like a special operations soldier with your goggles you can purchase the cheaper ones. They work just fine in a movie theater or concert setting. One food for thought if the concert has bright or flashing lights well then maybe avoid this idea to save your eyesight. Just remember look at the crowd not the performance.

Lastly, if unauthorized reproduction has been initiated at the event then at that point it might be up to anti-piracy software to capture the unauthorized reproduction. Perhaps, the use of other tech tricks such as building digital walls to your product or looking for misuse on the internet. Depending on the software the goal would be to lookout for, spot, and remove unauthorized content.

Just remember enjoy your event. Have fun, stay safe, and be vigilant.

Lee Barnard, CPP

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