New Grassroots Organization Aims To Fight Content Theft

LOS ANGELES (CBS) — A new grassroots organization has declared war on the growing problem of content piracy.

People are illegally downloading TV shows and movies and their actions are threatening jobs.

Movies and TV shows can cost hundreds of millions of dollars to create and years to produce, but can be stolen in the blink of an eye.

Hollywood may romanticize the life of pirates looting in the 1800s, but present-day pirates are threatening the entire industry.

They set up websites where people can download and watch bootlegs of movies and TV shows without paying a dime.

“We’ve lost 140,000 jobs already to content theft,” said Craig Hoffman, the Communication Director for a website called Creative America, a grassroots organization trying to spread the word about real-life movie pirates.

But major stars are not the ones feeling the pinch; it is the thousands of men and women who work on the other side of the lens whose livelihoods are on the line.

As supervisor of the grip department at CBS Studio Center, Jamie Barnett sees the cost of piracy in human terms.

“It’s scary, it’s very scary… And when that grip doesn’t work, his mortgage doesn’t get paid. And when his mortgage doesn’t get paid, his car payment doesn’t get paid and thing about how many jobs that impacts,” Barnett said.

Creative America is trying to spread the word about new legislation that could strengthen laws to help identify the movie and TV show pirates and put a stop to them.

CBS Corporation, the parent company of this website, is part of the coalition that makes up Creative America.

For more information visit Creative America online at

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One Comment

  1. duh says:

    This is such total b s… more lip service, doom & gloom, and false statistics.

    The facts are, digital pirating has VERY LITTLE effect on first run movies. The effects are slightly greater when it comes out on DVD. DVD sales are profits for the studios and some of the contracted actors, but the GRIPS and others who worked on the production are ALREADY PAID. If you make a GOOD movie, it will profit in the multiple millions, and make way for more movies that keep production teams employed. No amount of current digital piracy is going to put ‘the little people’ out on the street. Digital piracy will, in fact, undercut to OVERALL bottom-line for the movie studio’s total profit. If it undercuts to the point of unprofitability, then movie studios will QUIT making movies. This will NEVER happen, because the undercut is so low, it not only has no real measurable concern, it also will never actually threaten future productions. If a studio wishes to choose between 200 million in profits, or zero, they will choose 200 million, even if the potential was 220 million.

    This is ludicrous. Try again.

  2. tom s. says:

    “Really” a couple thousand dollars lost against a multi billion a year business ?
    That should be the description of petty in the dictionary.

    1. duh says:

      Well, let’s not exaggerate the other direction.. it’s a lot more than a couple thousand dollars, even for just one major motion picture, but the idea that it’s a drop in the bucket is correct.

      140,000 jobs ALREADY lost? That’s just the most ridiculous statistic I’ve seen in a really long time. It’s not even 140. It’s not even 1. The fact is, they need a platform from which to garner our sympathy, and what better platform than to say the average joe is getting hurt? If they are left asking us for sympathy that they just couldn’t ‘pure profit’ additional revenue beyond the millions they made on release, well, they’d hear a pin drop with a deafening cacophony.

      The recording artists are, per ratio of sales vs piracy, much more affected from such digital piracy. I also don’t see anyone losing recording contracts. The recording studios are simply left choosing the most popular artists, and the weaker ones are left with Facebook, YouTube and iTunes for their distribution. We have much bigger things to worry about. MUCH bigger.

  3. Robinton says:

    Kill those jews.

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