The Jakarta Post - JPlus - - Between The Lines - WORDS HANS DAVID TAMPUBOLON

Irawan Karseno takes arts in com­mand

The old adage “shar­ing is car­ing” is pop­u­lar among so­cial media users and on­line com­mu­nity mem­bers. It is based on the prin­ci­ple that when some­one shares some­thing ben­e­fi­cial on so­cial media or an on­line com­mu­nity, then he or she is ba­si­cally show­ing re­spect and care for other users. In ex­change, peo­ple who like to share on so­cial media and on­line com­mu­nity plat­forms of­ten re­ceive re­wards in the form of rep­u­ta­tion points or their author­ity level. Kaskus, the largest on­line fo­rum in the na­tion, for ex­am­ple, de­vel­oped a rep­u­ta­tion-based sys­tem that re­wards users who share good in­for­ma­tion. The more rep­u­ta­tion points, the more author­ity the users gain with other users. So­cial media and in­ter­net savvy In­done­sians also like to share artis­tic work on so­cial media and on­line plat­forms. Some do it to get at­ten­tion from the artists by telling them how good their work is, some to boost their so­cial sta­tus among their vir­tual on­line friends and some may do it for the sim­ple rea­son that they can.

While on most oc­ca­sions artists can ap­pre­ci­ate their work be­ing show­cased on on­line plat­forms, in some rare cases, cre­ative in­dus­try play­ers might deem it to be of­fen­sive and po­ten­tially cause losses to them.

For ex­am­ple, film­maker Ha­nung Bra­man­tyo found that footage of his lat­est film Rudy Habi­bie had been shared on so­cial media.

“Most of the users who shared short-length footage were naïve teenagers. They didn’t know that what they did could be con­sid­ered piracy and they could be crim­i­nally charged. Once I told them that, they im­me­di­ately apol­o­gized and deleted their shares,” Ha­nung said.

“I can be­lieve their claim that they were naïve and in­no­cent. How­ever, there were some who shared a con­sid­er­able amount of footage of the film. One YouTube user even shared the whole two-hour film.”

Ha­nung said the full-length footage of the film was clearly recorded in a cin­ema and it truly sur­prised him that nei­ther the cin­ema au­thor­i­ties nor the au­di­ence mem­bers stopped the record­ing process.

“The cin­ema au­thor­i­ties and other mem­bers of the au­di­ence in the cin­ema should have been able to spot the guy who recorded the film us­ing his smart­phone and stop him from do­ing it, but this did not hap­pen. This shows that we still need to ed­u­cate the pub­lic more about the im­por­tance of re­spect­ing oth­ers’ artis­tic work and copy­right,” he said.

A decade ago, when so­cial media

was not as pop­u­lar as it is to­day, pi­rated prod­ucts were mostly shared through the dis­tri­bu­tion and sell­ing of DVDs, VCDs and CDs.

Among In­done­sian pi­rates back then was an un­writ­ten code of honor that they would never sell pi­rated ver­sions of “Karya Anak Bangsa” (In­done­sian-made artis­tic work) as a sym­bol that they did not want to make il­le­gal prof­its out of their fel­low coun­try­men.

When so­cial media emerged as a new shar­ing plat­form, how­ever, more and more In­done­sian artis­tic work has been dig­i­tally up­loaded and shared. Those who do this of­ten think that since they are not mak­ing money from their shar­ing ac­tiv­ity, and be­cause so­cial media is freely ac­ces­si­ble, then they are sim­ply show­ing their virtue and ap­pre­ci­a­tion to­ward the com­mu­nity.


Ari Ju­liano Gema from the anti-piracy di­vi­sion of the Cre­ative Econ­omy Agency (Bekraf) said the agency tried con­tin­u­ously to ed­u­cate the pub­lic that dig­i­tally shar­ing movies, mu­sic or other forms of copy­righted work through free so­cial media ac­counts was as il­le­gal as sell­ing them for profit.

“If you share some­thing with­out the con­sent or the per­mis­sion of its copy­right hold­ers, you have con­ducted piracy and you can be crim­i­nally charged. So, we al­ways try to ed­u­cate the au­di­ence to never share movies or other forms of art­work that they are en­joy­ing even if they do not en­joy any fi­nan­cial profit from do­ing so,” said Bekraf’s in­tel­lec­tual prop­erty rights reg­u­la­tion and fa­cil­i­ta­tion deputy.

“Peo­ple need to know that so­cial media shar­ing of im­por­tant art­work con­tent, such as an im­por­tant scene of a film, can dam­age the in­dus­try in the long run. If you spoil an im­por­tant scene, then other peo­ple who have not watched the film might lose in­ter­est in watch­ing it and when more and more peo­ple do this, the in­dus­try and its play­ers will suf­fer.”

Other than its ed­u­ca­tional ef­forts, Ari added that the agency had also co­op­er­ated with law en­forcers to close on­line plat­forms that dig­i­tally shared In­done­sian art­work il­le­gally.

“We re­cently closed down 22 web­sites that of­fer free down­loads of In­done­sian films,” he said.

Ari also said the agency would re­mind the­aters and en­ter­tain­ment venues that they could also be crim­i­nally charged if they con­tin­ued to ig­nore the agency’s re­quest for more dili­gent mon­i­tor­ing of their au­di­ence.

“Tech­ni­cally speak­ing, the­aters and venues with their CCTVs have the ca­pac­ity to stop any mem­ber of the au­di­ence who tries to make il­le­gal record­ings. If a the­ater or venue is proven to be neg­li­gent in such ac­tiv­i­ties, then they might be held legally ac­count­able as well,” he said.

Sep­a­rately, film and cre­ative in­dus­try an­a­lyst Adrian Jonathan Pasaribu from Cin­ema Poet­ica film crit­i­cism and stud­ies web­site said that while pub­lic ed­u­ca­tion on copy­right and in­tel­lec­tual prop­erty rights was an im­por­tant step in the bat­tle against the piracy in­dus­try, In­done­sia still had a long way to go.

“Our cre­ative in­dus­try is still lack­ing in terms of in­fra­struc­ture. In ad­di­tion to this, it is very hard to mea­sure any­thing con­crete from this kind of in­dus­try,” he said.

In other coun­tries, the UK and US, for ex­am­ple, artists have been able to de­velop in­no­va­tive and cre­ative ways to curb piracy of their prod­ucts.

English al­ter­na­tive band Ra­dio­head once re­leased a new al­bum for free on their of­fi­cial web­site. When a lis­tener had down­loaded and lis­tened to the al­bum, then he or she could re­turn to the band’s web­site to make a pay­ment in what­ever amount that they deemed the al­bum wor­thy of.

It was a great in­no­va­tion from Ra­dio­head and was con­sid­ered rev­o­lu­tion­ary for the mu­sic in­dus­try. Adapt­ing this kind of in­no­va­tion in In­done­sia, Adrian said, would be very dif­fi­cult for now.

“Ra­dio­head could do what they did be­cause the in­fra­struc­ture there was very com­plete. They could eas­ily mea­sure the num­ber of down­loads, pur­chases and so on. In In­done­sia, how­ever, with­out the ca­pa­bil­ity to con­cretely mea­sure re­sults, then cre­ative in­dus­try play­ers will find it very hard to adopt a sim­i­lar in­no­va­tion,” he said.

RIGHTS OF WAY: Bekraf’s Ari Ju­liano Gema, MD Pic­tures’ CEO Manoj Pun­jabi, for­mer pres­i­dent BJ Habi­bie, di­rec­tor Ha­nung Bra­man­tyo and ac­tor Reza Ra­ha­dian at a press con­fer­ence for the new film Rudy Habi­bie. Cour­tesy of MD Pic­tures

JP/Jerry Adiguna

JP/Jerry Adiguna

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