Press Release
December 4, 2007


Senator Ramon "Bong" Revilla Jr. reiterates his long-time advocacy of curbing the proliferation of pirated music and film discs and computer software by heading a lighting raid in a shopping center in Metro Manila.

The senator, together with the Optical Media Board (OMB), stormed the Makati Cinema Square where wholesalers and retailers of pirated audio-visual materials were caught by surprise.

Thousands of pirated compacts discs, video compact discs and computer software, including local and foreign films, were seized from the raid.

"Being the chairman of the joint congressional oversight committee on the Optical Media Law, we want to know how effective this law is. Being the former chairman of the VRB, we also want to know the effect of the law on the ground, and how it is being implemented. That's why I joined this raid," Revilla said.

According to the lawmaker, the anti-piracy campaign of the government must be consistent in order to fully eradicate the production and marketing of pirated discs and software.

He stressed that there is no place for piracy because it is the same as stealing and patronizing stolen property.

"Tolerating video and music piracy is allowing robbery of intellectual property. We must not stop our anti-piracy efforts. We should even intensify it," said Revilla, chairman of the Senate Committee on Public Information and Mass Media and erstwhile chairman of the Videogram Regulatory Board (now the OMB).

Revilla clarified that he recognizes the right of the poor to have equal access to products in the market but it should not include pirated CDs and DVDs because it would mean allowing stolen property to be openly sold at a lower price. He also cited the sad state of the local motion picture and recording industries largely due to piracy. "Over 200,000 workers in this industry have lost their jobs, and more will lose theirs if we will not keep on fighting piracy," he said.

He also pointed out the study released this year by the Business Software Alliance (BSA), an international association representing the commercial software industry, revealing losses in piracy went up to US$119 million last year from US$76 million in 2005.

"Is the law really addressing the problem? Is it coping up with the development of technology? These are the questions we would like answered when we review the law. We want to assist the OMB in this undertaking," Revilla added.

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