Creative Content UK Will Deliver Stronger Engagement with Film Lovers

January 27, 2015

On 27 January 2015, I joined a panel discussion at the Let’s Go Connected event in London sponsored by NBC Universal, Bertelsmann and Sky. The panel was entitled “How to encourage legal consumption of digital content.” What a perfect opportunity for me to talk about Creative Content UK – this innovative, ground-breaking and experimental new partnership between the creative sectors, leading ISPs and the UK Government. Its objective is to raise awareness amongst movie lovers and other fans of the wide array of legitimate online content services and encourage them to turn their backs on piracy.

We need to bust the myth that legal content is unavailable. Creative industries are tirelessly experimenting with new business models that deliver films, books, music, TV programs, newspapers, games and other creative works to consumers. In Europe, there are over 3,000 on-demand audio-visual services available to European citizens. According to a recent KPMG report, 86% of the most popular and highest quality films and television series are available across legal digital platforms to UK consumers.

So how do we encourage legal consumption of digital content? Yesterday I shared some ideas of my own: First, movie makers and movie lovers are more than just producers and consumers; we share a passion for creativity. We should build on that shared value as we make the case for the importance of accessing and enjoying creative works from legitimate sites.

Second, we need to introduce the creators and makers who make movies, TV shows and other creative works possible. We need to raise awareness about the fact that our industries are comprised of creators and makers who come in all shapes and sizes – not just outsize stars. When an MPA member company makes a film in the UK, it isn’t just about stars like Tom Cruise acting in Edge of Tomorrow or Kenneth Branagh directing the new Cinderella. It’s also about thousands of people who build the sets, sew the costumes, and push the technological frontiers of modern moviemaking. Those people are the heart of the creative ecosystem. They deserve to be paid for their efforts.

Third, we have to convince people that individual behaviour matters. We all recognize this when it comes to the environment: keeping recyclable plastic bottles out of landfills, for example, requires millions of individual choices every day. Fans want movie makers and other creators to keep doing what we do and even do it better, and for that to happen we all need to support the legitimate economy that makes that possible.

Creative Content UK is an exciting initiative. The MPA is proud to take part in this experiment, and we look forward to testing these and other ideas for opening a new conversation with UK movie lovers and other fans.