Philippines: Rights group calls for site-blocking
June 17, 2022
By Colin Mann
Philippines rights group CitizenWatch has called on the nation’s legislators to give the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL) more power to do its job effectively.
“Citizens are the ultimate losers in online piracy,” declares Atty. Tim Abejo, Co-Convenor. “In violating intellectual property, pirates threaten the viability of the creative industry. They must be stopped before a permanent damage is done to a potential engine of growth in the emerging digital economy,” he asserts.
“CitizenWatch urges our new set of lawmakers to immediately amend the Intellectual Property Code so that IPOPHL, the agency tasked to protect intellectual property, would have more administrative power to effectively do its job,” he states.
“Specifically, the IPOPHL must be empowered to implement rolling site-blocking – a practice now prevalent in other countries – to ensure that pirates do not just transfer their illegal activities to other sites once their original sites are blocked,” he advises.
“We are missing out on a lot by continuing to drag our feet in this issue of piracy. Piracy brings tangible economic losses and missed opportunities. It kills our people’s spirit of innovation and creativity. It deprives legitimate intellectual property owners of what is rightfully theirs and enables cyber thieves to profit from the work of others. Incoming lawmakers must make correcting this injustice a priority,” he concludes.