15 august 2016, 17:36

«Tricolor TV» cleans the digital television market off pirates

The biggest Russian operator of digital television «Tricolor TV» continues active struggle against «pirates» both in Russia and on the territory of Commonwealth of Independent States. Within the reporting period, 12 criminal cases were instituted, about 470 Internet resources were blocked, works on stopping illegal use of the trade mark are carried out. Efficient antipiracy campaign of «Tricolor TV» is facilitated by updated Russian law and new technologies of satellite signal transmission and cryptosecurity.

Results of antipiracy activity of «Tricolor TV» for the fourth quarter of 2015 and the first six months of 2016 have been summed up. Within that period, law-enforcement authorities have stopped attempts of spreading «piratic» smart cards and malicious software in several regions of Russia. 12 criminal cases were instituted in Russia and Commonwealth of Independent States. Three materials were referred to the court, judgements of conviction were pronounced with regard to two of them. Investigations of nine more criminal cases are under way.

The company continues active work on elimination of infringements of law and in such area as «card sharing»*. Another judgement of conviction was pronounced with regard to the citizen of the Russian Federation who fraudulently connected users to piratic «services». Three similar criminal cases were instituted in the Republic of Belarus, and they are now at the stage of investigation.

Within the framework of pre-trial fighting against piratic websites offering illegal access to satellite TV channels, over 470 Internet resources have been blocked during the reporting period by request of «Tricolor TV».

One more direction of antipiracy activity of «Tricolor TV» is stopping of infringements of neighbouring rights and copyrights. It is a question of broadcasting of TV channels in public places (cafés, sports clubs, hotels, etc.) without conclusion of respective agreements with the operator. The campaign implemented in 2014 — the first six months of 2015, showed good results, having significantly reduced the number of infringements of this type. Thus, by results of check of 507 objects, 81 administrative protocols were drawn up, and within the reporting period of the 4th quarter of 2015 — the 2nd quarter of 2016, 12 infringements were detected. After a warning, four legal entities concluded agreements with «Tricolor TV» for the right of public and numbered demonstration, the other eight cases on administrative infringement were considered judicially. With regard to four of them, court decrees were passed on awarding administrative punishment in the form of confiscation of receiving equipment and fines of 30 000 Roubles on the average. Besides fines, on the basis of materials of administrative proceedings, the operator filed suits on collection of compensation in the total amount of 250 000 Roubles. Infringements connected with non-contractual public demonstration were recorded simultaneously in several cities of Russia: St. Petersburg, Volgograd, Lipetsk.

Infringements of neighbouring rights and copyrights committed by cable and IPTV operators illegally retransmitting content of «Tricolor TV», should be noted separately. Thus at present two petitions on calling to criminal responsibility have been prepared with regard to two regional operators.

Besides, «Tricolor TV» has paid special attention to protection against illegal use of the trade mark. Popularity of «Tricolor TV» in Russian regions results in appearance of the websites in the network which emulate the website tricolor.tv, partially the content of the website or the corporate style and the logo of the company without the respective permit of the operator. Warnings were issued to the owners of such resources; the respective domains (sections of the websites) were blocked by registrars of domain names or modified, the majority of claims were settled extrajudicially.

In the opinion of the company management, final cleaning of the Russian TV broadcasting market off pirates will make it more attractive for rightholders, and the main thing, it will free Russian TV viewers off the risk to face low-quality fakes and illegal firmware. During last few years, the number of infringements in the segment of digital television has considerably reduced thanks to joint actions of operators and law-enforcement authorities, updated legislative base, as well as new technologies of satellite signal transmission and cryptosecurity providing maximum copy protection.

Elizaveta Kapralova
Chief Communication Officer, Tricolor TV
Our antipiracy activity gave positive results, but we will not stop at what we have reached. «Tricolor TV» is a leader of the industry, and what the Russian digital market will be like in principle, is to a certain extent our responsibility. Digital television is developing, the number of subscribers of commercial TV has recently got over 40 mln households, which is 73% of all households of Russia. The situation in the industry has essentially changed within the last few yeas, including at the legislative level. It was important for us to set a precedent in fighting against piracy, to show that we will detect and eliminate infringements, and that even most remote regions and most insignificant incidents will be the objects of our close attention for taking antipiracy measures.
Our antipiracy activity gave positive results, but we will not stop at what we have reached. «Tricolor TV» is a leader of the industry, and what the Russian digital market will be like in principle, is to a certain extent our responsibility. Digital television is developing, the number of subscribers of commercial TV has recently got over 40 mln households, which is 73% of all households of Russia. The situation in the industry has essentially changed within the last few yeas, including at the legislative level. It was important for us to set a precedent in fighting against piracy, to show that we will detect and eliminate infringements, and that even most remote regions and most insignificant incidents will be the objects of our close attention for taking antipiracy measures.

* «Card sharing» is a widespread piracy scheme based on installation of satellite equipment at the place of unauthorized persons, and malicious software is installed on the satellite receiver, which connects the receiver with the piratic server via Internet. For the «card sharing» to operate, the owner of the server must make regular payments for its «services», usually in dollar terms.

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