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Mike Publishes Report on Tackling Advertising Revenue from Illegal Websites

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For a PDF of the report, click here.

Mike Weatherley, Intellectual Property Adviser to the Prime Minister and the Conservative Member of Parliament for Hove and Portslade, has published a report entitled Follow the Money, which addresses the detrimental impact of illegal websites profiting from advertising.

In his capacity as David Camerons Intellectual Property Adviser, Mike has been keen to cut off funding that is fuelling pirate websites that profit from advertising. This new report Follow the Money analyses the issue and makes a number of recommendations.

Key recommendations include: Increasing funding for the national Police Intellectual Property Crime Unit (PIPCU); Exploring the utility of advertising monitor software to ensure compliance of advertising codes; Requesting that PIPCU and the Intellectual Property Office (IPO) consider what additional legislation is necessary to require pre-emptive action by advertisers and payment providers. To read the report in full, click here.

Mike has also recently published a report entitled Search Engines and Piracy, which outlines the shortcomings of search engine providers in the fight against online piracy. To read the Search Engines and Piracy report, click here. Mike would like to thank Olswang for compiling both reports on his behalf.

Commenting, Mike said: Following the money is the key to shutting down the vast majority of websites that host illegal material. This report explores a number of issues surrounding the piracy debate and I hope that it will spur further discussion both in the UK and, given the international nature of this problem, in other countries across the world.

Mike added: As the Intellectual Property Adviser to the Prime Minister, I feel that it is my role to highlight just how damaging piracy is to the UK economy. It is paramount that we curb advertising revenue that is going to pirates who are, in turn, seriously damaging our creative industries.”

Commenting, the Prime Minister said: Mike Weatherley’s ‘Follow the Money’ discussion paper is an interesting addition to this important area of work and the Government will look at it closely. It is encouraging that creative industries are building a stronger relationship with our enforcement bodies, such as the new national Police Intellectual Property Crime Unit that the Government has established. Intellectual Property is an important property right that contributes enormously to our economy.

City of London Police Commander and Police National Coordinator for Economic Crime, Steve Head, said: “Disrupting revenue to pirate websites is vital to combating online intellectual property piracy and I therefore welcome the recommendations in Mike Weatherley’s report. We must take the profit out of this type of criminality and where legitimate companies, such as payment providers, are facilitating that profit they must be held to account if they fail to act.