MPAA’s Dodd: ‘It’s not just Brad Pitt you’re pirating’
March 3, 2014
By Colin Mann
Senator Chris Dodd, Chairman and CEO of the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) has suggested that there is a lack of correlation between the public’s appreciation of the product and its appreciation of the industry with most people thinking that they are stealing from Brad Pitt, rather than others involved.
Speaking to influential Washington publication National Journal, Dodd said that content protection was still a major issue, pointing out that with the emergence of streaming technologies it wasn’t just impacting on hard goods, where you get a DVD and make a copy. “Breaking Bad, I think this last episode was stolen 900,000 times,” he said.
According to Dodd, the MPAA did not envisage a legislative response to piracy after the collapse of pro-copyright SOPA and PIPA proposals. “We’re not pushing for legislation at all. What we are doing is looking .at these memorandums of understanding with the [Internet service providers], with the advertisers, with the payment processors and ourselves. It’s better to do it this way, in my view. You write the law and before the ink’s dry, you could have technology just trump it,” he suggested.
Dodd noted that the movie and technology industries could work together effectively. “We deal with Google all the time and have business relationships with them. I always start the conversation by saying we need to do more ourselves in this business. Everybody is part of the ecosystem of the Internet and needs to figure out how in this world as it changes almost at warp speed, how can we all do a better job of providing legal content to people in a way that is accessible, and of a good quality.”
He suspected that as Silicon Valley interests became more involved in content themselves, they would become “a little more jealous” about protecting content. “And again, our providing greater distribution services, providing content in a very accessible, timely fashion, I think, will help tremendously as well.”
In terms of the public’s view of Hollywood, Dodd said the correlation between appreciation of the product and appreciation of the industry didn’t line up. “When you get to these debates and discussions about content protection and so forth, most people are thinking, what—stealing from Brad Pitt? How big a deal is that? It’s not Brad Pitt—it’s that guy behind that camera. It’s the guy in that sound truck.”