How Voluntary Agreements Among Key Stakeholders Help Combat Digital Piracy

February 24, 2020
  • There is no single, easy solution to the scourge of digital piracy. But voluntary agreements between copyright holders and payment processors, advertising networks, domain name registrars, search engines, and others can and should play a key role.
  • These voluntary agreements target key facilitating services and processes that enable piracy sites to profit from facilitating access to illegal content as if they were legitimate businesses—which they most definitely are not.
  • Digital-piracy-focused voluntary agreements are increasingly common around the world. They differ by country and issue, but empirical evidence shows they can meaningfully effect consumer behavior, reduce piracy, and increase legal sales.
  • The United States, Europe, and others should support further research and discussion of how voluntary agreements can be a standard part of every country’s digital piracy toolkit.
  • Governments should proactively encourage more voluntary agreements alongside other anti-piracy policies as part of a reinvigorated, pragmatic discussion about best practices to support IP in the global digital economy.