The major Russian operator of digital television Tricolor TV continues its ambitious anti-piracy campaign in Russia and neighboring countries. Within the reporting period law enforcement officials instituted 21 administrative proceedings and 13 criminal charges on the violations of Tricolor TV rights, over 900 Internet resources were blocked upon requests by the operator. The work of law enforcement officials and positive changes in law enforcement practice support the efficiency of anti-piracy campaign.
Tricolor TV took stock of anti-piracy activities during 2017. To prevent unlawful activities of connecting individuals to digital television services by means of installation of unauthorized equipment and malware, law enforcement officials seized over 160 unauthorized equipments, used for illegal activities (65 unauthorized receivers, 46 smart‑cards, 44 microchips and encryption boxes, and other equipment).
Important results were achieved in anti digital piracy area such as detection of law infringements in the field of malware distribution and modification of hardware for illegal access to digital services. Seven more indictments were issued to the Russian Federation citizens, all of them were deemed criminally liable and sentenced to the payment of fines. Within the reporting period, 13 criminal cases had been launched in Russia and CIS. Other cases are being investigated.
Other important anti-piracy activity of Tricolor TV — restraint of violation of authors’ and neighboring rights. The operator detects illegal TV channels broadcast in public places (cafes, waiting rooms of transport hubs, sport clubs, hotels etc.), i.e. without conclusion of agreement on the rights of public display by a legal entity. In 2017, following the Office of the Prosecutor-General and MIA representatives checks, carried out with the assistance of the company’s employees, 21 administrative proceedings were instituted. In this regard legal entities of 8 administrative cases were sanctioned. Other cases are being investigated. The majority of cases of irregularity in B2B-segment are managed to be settled out of court. In 2017 as part of pretrial claims activities 47 agreements on the right of public and rooms display were concluded, which exceeds the previous year figure by almost four times. Positive changes in law enforcement practice support the efficiency of these activities.
Tricolor TV continues activities against pirate sites, detrimental to finance and reputation of business, including through illegal access to satellite television channels. Within the reported period over 900 Internet resources (sites and pages) were blocked upon the operator request.
Other anti-piracy activities of Tricolor TV are held in regard to illegal use of trademark. In 2017 Tricolor TV twice won in action against Russian citizens, who consequently faced civil and legal liability and were sentenced to pay compensation in respect of violation of exclusive rights.
“Let’s call things as they are: proliferation of pirated goods is a theft, as well as their use. Unfortunately, part of our society finds the free use of products of other people labor, the use of what others pay for, permissible. Without quite realizing that by doing so they violate the law, commit a crime, for which they will be held administratively or even criminally responsible. As a leader of Russian pay television market Tricolor TV is at the forefront of the war against piracy. We assist law enforcement officials throughout our country, work actively with offenders from B2B-segment. Taking into consideration the fact, that many violations happen through the mere ignorance of laws, so, we in a way perform educational activities. Tricolor TV supports the cooperation and activation of anti-piracy performance trend among both single TV-channels or operators, and different sector associations. Jointly with other market stakeholders we participate in designing legislative initiatives to improve normative foundation and enter the new level of anti-piracy activity”.
Anti-piracy activity ensures improvement of financial figures of digital television market and of control over the quality of digital services, as right-holder and operator, in contrast to pirates, are liable for a quality of broadcasted content and subscribers experience. Due to technology improvement, including digital broadcasting and cryptosecurity, providing the best protection against copying, and concentrated effort of industry stakeholders, associations and law enforcement officials, the combat of piracy in Russia reinforces licensed market year by year.