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Fake Free London By 2012

Date posted: 04.12.2008

Fake Free London - a pilot of a new anti-piracy initiative for London was announced by the UK film industry at a launch event chaired by Adrian Wootton, Chief Executive of Film London. It is the largest ever collaborative campaign to combat DVD piracy which aims to stamp out piracy for the Olympic Games in 2012 – making the capital a ‘fake free’ zone.

Formally announced on 3 December, Fake Free London is being led by the MPA and UK Film Council, with support from UK Intellectual Property Office, FACT, London Councils, London Trading Standards Association, Film London and the Metropolitan Police.

The pilot itself is already up and running in three London boroughs: Tower Hamlets, Brent & Harrow and Lewisham. In the first two weeks 39 arrests were made and so far, over 90,000 pirate DVDs have been seized, alongside the equipment used to make them.

Copyright theft cost the film and TV industries £486m in 2007. Adrian Wootton, Chief Executive of Film London, commented: “The general public need to know that piracy has a devastating loss to the UK film and TV industry - almost £500m was lost in revenue in 2007. This not only affects the livelihoods of tens of thousands of people who work in the UK film industry but may start to impact on the creativity and quality of films themselves.” 

Kieron Sharp, Head of FACT, says: “Piracy is often seen as a ‘victimless’ crime but this could not be further from the truth... The aim of Fake Free London is to enable and assist enforcement agencies across the capital in tackling the manufacture, distribution and sale of counterfeit DVDs and the organised criminal networks enabling and profiting from this illegal trade.”

Through education, the campaign will help local government, businesses and traders understand the gravity of piracy and how it affects their borough. In support of the communities of London a programme will also be put into place next year which involves DVD donations to local libraries, allowing members of the public to come and borrow genuine DVDs.

A series of screenings of Danny Boyle’s latest film Slumdog Millionaire will also be put on - run in conjunction with Seefilmfirst, these are part of the anti-piracy campaign to give something back to local communities.

In order to gain your free tickets go to the Seefilmfirst website and register a simple code (shown in brackets below) relative to the cinema and date you wish to visit:

  • 7 December
    Hymalaya Palace (SLUMDOG3)
    Odeon Surrey Quays (SLUMDOG2)
    Cineworld, Tower Hamlets (SLUMDOG6)
  • 14 December
    Genesis Cinema (SLUMDOG10)
    Rio Cinema (SLUMDOG 11)
  • 16 December
    Picturehouse Cinema, Stratford (SLUMDOG 12)

You can also get directly involved in the Fake Free London campaign by taking positive action and reporting film piracy to Crimestoppers – call them anonymously on 0800 555 111.

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