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CreativeFuture: Credit Card Companies Must Crack Down

The CreativeFuture Coalition is giving Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) a shout out for asking credit card companies to do more to prevent their services from being used to steal creative content from TV shows, film producers and others.

In a letter to the senator, who is the former chair of the Judiciary Committee, the coalition cites Leahy's letter to credit card companies back in November—when Leahy was still chairman—in which he told the CEO's of major credit card companies that they were not doing enough to prevent "websites that host and incentivize unauthorized content [from operating] like legitimate businesses."

In his Nov. 25 letters to the CEO's of MasterCard and Visa, Leahy said payment processors had made strides to prevent online infringement, but needed to do more, including reviewing complaints against cyberlockers and no longer offering payment processing services to infringing sites.

"We are hopeful that credit card companies will heed your advice and choose to take the appropriate steps to prevent their business models from supporting websites that are dedicated to the theft of creative works," the coalition wrote.

It pointed to a study by NetNames and the Digital Citizens Alliance that found the top 30 cyberlocker sites made almost $100 million last year from ads and subscriptions paid for through credit cards.

The coalition includes over 350 companies and groups, including major Hollywood studios.

Those studios have pushed websites, search engines and payment processors all to do more to prevent online piracy.