The Chamber of Commerce, along with entertainment industry representatives, is teaming up to convince Congress to pass the Preventing Real Online Threats to Economic Creativity and Theft of Intellectual Property Act.
Also known as PROTECT IP, the bill that was introduced in May by Vermont Senator Patrick Leahy, if passed, would prohibit search engines, advertisers and payment service providers from doing business with websites set up for the purpose of copyright infringement. The Department of Justice would determine which websites would be prohibited.
According to Reuters, the bill is being supported by NBC Universal, Walt Disney Company and Warner Music, among others. Members of the industry are saying that legislation is necessary to protect copyrighted works from piracy. A representative from the American Federation of Musicians stated that around 90 percent of music downloads were illegal in 2008.
Intellectual property-intensive industries account for 19 million jobs in the United States and 60 percent of U.S. exports, Steve Tepp, director of internet counterfeiting and piracy for the Chamber of Commerce's Global Intellectual Property Center, told the news source. This is why many industry executives are supporting PROTECT IP and want to make strides toward preventing piracy in the future.