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Trump Mandates Report on Ways to Better Combat IP Piracy

The Trump Administration has pledged to protect intellectual property from pirates online and off, an issue that has long concerned distributors of video content, both physical (DVDs) and digital.

That pledge came in a presidential memorandum to various executive branch agencies.

The President said it was his policy to "protect American businesses, intellectual property rights holders, consumers, national and economic security, and the American public from the dangers and negative effects of counterfeit and pirated goods, including those that are imported through online third-party marketplaces and other third-party intermediaries."

To do that, the President wants a comprehensive report on the issue, produced by the Secretary of Commerce "in consultation with the Attorney General, the director of the office of management and budget, the United States Trade Representative, the assistant to the President for economic policy, the assistant to the President for trade and manufacturing policy, the heads of other executive departments and agencies (agencies) and offices..."

That report has to include ways to get better data on what is being counterfeited and how it is being distributed. And to the extent that the data is not available or accessible to the government, he wants recommended changes to data collection practices to close that gap, according to the memorandum.

And while the President has bragged about the regulations he has eliminated, he wants to know whether there are statutory or regulatory actions that could reduce such trafficking or allow for sharing of information on pirated goods with IP rightsholders and consumers.

A version of the report will be made public.

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.