By Ireen Mulenga
Zambia National Arts Council, Law Enforcement Agencies and creative industry leaders have launched an Anti-Piracy Campaign dubbed Partners Against Piracy (PAP), an initiative that directs resources in the fight against rampant content theft in Zambia.
The campaign is a collaborative initiative between government agencies, distributors, content creators and rights owners, seeks to educate and inform the public at large about the effects of piracy to the industry.
Speaking at the launch of the campaign, Minister of Tourism and Arts, Permanent Secretary Patrick Lungu said the Ministry was saddened by the statistics of the high levels of piracy particularly of local creative content in Zambia.
“The knowledge industry is bleeding due to rampant piracy, which in its basic understanding is theft – plain and simple. Piracy does not just affect the artists, it affects their families, it affects local communities and businesses as well as our government’s ability to deliver on its mandate,” he said.
Mr Lungu said the monetization of the arts and related industries sector will encourage more creativity and innovation which are much needed in the current economic climate, which has seen the global economy shrink due to the ongoing pandemic.
And National Arts Council (NAC) Director Maanka Chipindi said piracy was a serious scourge that had implications on everyone.
Mr Chipindi said the campaign is to show the public and everyone that an act of piracy is not a simple and innocent thing but a serious issue that has serious implications.
Meanwhile, National Association for Media Arts (NAMA), President Mr Lottie Siame said their are excited to be part of the Partners Against Piracy (PAP) initiative as it enhances the collaboration between different segments of the industry to fight the scourge of piracy.
Mr Siame said that the creative industry has the potential to be a massive economic growth engine in Zambia, but the growth potential is threatened by piracy.
He said the PAP campaign seeks to influence industry leaders to create a legal framework and reach a consensus on the best effective approach to counter piracy in Zambia.
Mr Siame said Pirates are profiting from the hard work of talented creators, entertainment companies and industries, denying these industries benefits from their work while exposing consumers to dangerous malware.