Global media database to slash piracy

Russia is proposing the creation of a global database of films, albums and books to help internet service providers deal with piracy.

Under the scheme, copyright holders will upload their intellectual property to the database. It will be given a digital label that specifies if content distribution is free of charge or not.

The labels will also enable owners to control how their intellectual property is used.

Experts say the database could be established with the help of the World Organization for Intellectual Property. President Medvedev has already backed the idea.

Russia has long been waging war against piracy. In early May, US Trade Representative Ron Kirk listed Russia among the 12 countries where intellectual rights are often violated.

It is the 14th year in a row that Russia has ended up on the list. Among the worst copyright offenders is Russia’s version of Facebook, called VKontakte (In Contact). It was included in the international black list of pirate websites.

In May 2011, President Dmitry Medvedev created an agency to protect intellectual property rights.

The new body was set up to fight copyright infringement, an issue that has long been an obstacle to Russia joining the World Trade Organization. It is also be responsible for monitoring government contracts and the contracting organizations themselves.

The president also plans to set up a special court dealing exclusively with copyright issues, to be located in the Skolkovo innovation hub.

Back in March 2011, the Russian Justice Ministry declined to register a local Pirate Party. The ministry sent the party founders an official letter saying that Russian law describes piracy is an attack on a sea or river vessels and is considered to be a crime.

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