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Ministry examining proposal for initiating campaign against piracy: Ambika Soni

By Abdul Nisar

New Delhi, Sep 7 (ANI): Union Information and Broadcasting Minister Ambika Soni on Tuesday said the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting is in the process of examining a proposal regarding the launching of a multi-media campaign involving all stakeholders against the menace of piracy.

"For the proposed campaign, the Government and the private sector would work in tandem to make the campaign effective. In order to refrain the people from buying pirated goods, celebrities would endorse the campaign to enhance its impact and outreach," said Soni, while delivering the keynote address a seminar on anti-piracy and Regulation of Content- Legal Issues here today.

Ambika Soni stated that a multi pronged approach was necessary to tackle the menace of piracy, taking into account the demand and supply equation.

"A solution was possible if both the demand and supply of pirated content was reduced. It was critical to position appropriate instruments and mechanisms at both the policy and implementation level to make piracy a risky proposition," said Soni.

"In order to achieve the desired results, the deliverables had to be clearly earmarked on a roadmap that was implementable by all stakeholders involved in the process," she added.

Regarding the issue of content regulation, Ambika Soni said the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting set up a Task Force in November 2009, with representation from all key stakeholders on the issue.

"Structured discussions have been held with all the stakeholders including business organizations, consumer groups, media experts and statutory bodies such as NCW and National Commission of Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) to evolve a way forward," said Soni.

"It was necessary that civil society evinced confidence in the initiatives taken to redress the grievances vis-à-vis matters relating to content," she added.

On the issue of self-regulation, Ambika Soni stated that as a concept, the idea had to be effective in addressing the given concerns.

As far as the technology initiatives were concerned, she mentioned that the Ministry was facilitating the digitalization process.

"Taking into account the priorities, the Ministry was looking into a feasible sun-set date for complete makeover. The objective was to address the concern of all stakeholders and establish a roadmap in an enabling environment," said Soni.

"A case-in-point was the HITS policy, which reduced the cost of makeover for the analog operators in the move towards digitalization," she added.

Soni also referred to the constitution of the Committee under Dr. Amit Mitra on Television Rating Points (TRPs) in her address, which had been constituted in the backdrop of deficiencies in the present system of generation of TRPs in India given its possible impact on the programming content of TV channels.

"The mandate of the Committee was expected to address issues related to accuracy, accountability, transparency and objectivity in the generation of TRPs. It was also expected to examine as to how misleading TRPs may not only impact broadcasters and advertisers but more importantly the viewing public," said Soni.

"The report of the Committee would offer critical inputs in comprehensively examining all issues related to TRPs in India," she added. (ANI)

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