Chernin: Hollywood Fears Internet Theft

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News Corp. president and chief operating officer Peter Chernin warned
Wednesday that rampant movie piracy is a serious threat to Hollywood's financial
health.

Calling illegal downloads and file sharing a 'moral issue,' Chernin said a
generation of young computer users is growing up believing 'theft is OK.'

'The truth is that stealing is stealing,' Chernin said in a speech to the
Media Institute. 'Swiping a movie with the help of digital technology is no
different than breaking the glass and swiping from your local video store.'

Chernin's company is seeking the help of the computer industry to install
technology that would prevent unauthorized downloads and file sharing by
computer users. He's just as troubled by the conversion of analog content into
unprotected digital content stored on computers.

Without that industry's cooperation, News Corp. and The Walt Disney Co. are
advocating passage of federal legislation to assist shutting down the
movie-piracy trade.

A spokesman for the Consumer Electronics Association said his industry is
concerned that Hollywood wants a restrictive copy-protection scheme that would
undermine hard-won home recording rights in court.

But Chernin claimed that the home recording debate should not be allowed to
cloud movie piracy and the serious threat it presents to the content
community.

'Fair use is not a license for consumers to loot online,' he said, adding
that 4 million jobs and $65 billion in exports are at risk if the problem is not
addressed.

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