MPA Applauds Philippine Government and ISPs on Uniting to Block Websites Offering Pirated Content

Memorandum of Understanding Is Asia-Pacific Region’s First Voluntary Copyright Site-Blocking Agreement

September 20, 2023

MANILA, Philippines – The Motion Picture Association (MPA) released a statement today applauding the Philippine ISPs and the IPO Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL) for signing a voluntary site-blocking Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to disable access to illegal piracy websites.

The MOU, whose government signatories include the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL) and the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC), represents the first voluntary site-blocking agreement in the Asia-Pacific region. The MOU, and its underlying rules and regulations, allows for an administrative no-fault injunctive remedy to disable access to illegal websites. The terms of the MOU will go into effect in 60 days.

“More than 40 countries around the world today use judicial or administrative site blocking, which effectively counters online piracy by targeting illegal sites that provide access to pirated content,” said Jan van Voorn, Executive Vice President and Chief of Global Content Protection for the MPA. “The primary goal of the MOU is to encourage streaming via accessible, legal and safe services. We applaud Director General Barba and his team at IPOPHL, as well as GMA Network, Globe Telecom, Smart/PLDT and other ISPs whose tireless collaboration resulted in the launch of this voluntary site blocking agreement.”

“By combining our strengths, we are sending a powerful message to those who seek to exploit intellectual property rights without regard for the hard work and dedication that goes into creating it,” said Director General of IPOPHL, Rowel Barba. “Together, we are establishing a framework that will identify and block access to infringing websites, thereby disrupting illicit distribution channels and deterring potential violators.”

Streaming piracy websites and IPTV piracy services remain popular in the Philippines and continue to pose serious threats to the country’s video industry. Online piracy jeopardizes jobs for Filipinos, puts consumers at risk of harmful malware, undermines investment in the country, reduces tax contributions to the government, and stifles creativity.

“The voluntary site-blocking MOU is a welcome development as it is a huge step forward in helping the creative industry in our fight against piracy,” said Atty Lynn Delfin, First Vice President for Legal Affairs of GMA Network, Inc. “Hopefully, it will pave the way for a more robust site-blocking regime in the Philippines.”

GMA Network joined ACE in 2022, becoming the first Filipino entertainment conglomerate to join the world’s largest anti-piracy association.

About The Motion Picture Association
The Motion Picture Association, Inc. (MPA) serves as the global voice and advocate of the motion picture, home video, and television industries. It works in every corner of the globe to advance the creative industry, protect its members’ content across all screens, defend the creative and artistic freedoms of storytellers, and support innovative distribution models that bring an expansion of viewing choices to audiences around the world. Its member studios are: Netflix Studios, LLC; Paramount Pictures Corporation; Sony Pictures Entertainment Inc.; Universal City Studios LLC; Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures; and Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. Charles Rivkin is Chairman and CEO.

Media Contact:
Pamela Corante