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Senate Introduces PROTECT IP Legislation to Confront Foreign Counterfeiting Websites

WASHINGTON--U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee leaders Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Ranking Member Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and Senator Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) today introduced bipartisan legislation to counter and closedown foreign websites that illegally sell pirated American products.

The bipartisan bill, S.968–the “Preventing Real Online Threats to Economic Creativity and Theft of Intellectual Property Act,” or “PROTECT IP Act,” is cosponsored by Senators Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.), Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), Herb Kohl (D-Wis.), Christopher Coons (D-Del.) and Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.).

The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) offered the following statement by Chairman & CEO Mitch Bainwol on the legislation:

“American music is repeatedly stolen online every day, yet current laws have not kept pace with criminal enterprises that set up rogue websites overseas to escape accountability,” said Bainwol.  “The result for the music community is thousands of lost jobs and fewer opportunities for aspiring musicians.  This important legislation represents the beginning of a common-sense approach to hold illicit foreign websites accountable for profiting from the pirating of American ingenuity and creativity.

“We thank and applaud Chairman Leahy, Ranking Member Grassley, Senator Hatch and all of the cosponsors for their important work on ‘PROTECT IP Act.’  We look forward to working with the Senate and the House as they continue to develop an effective law that will save American jobs, protect creators’ property from rampant online theft and foster a legitimate online shopping experience for consumers.”

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The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) is the trade organization that supports and promotes the creative and financial vitality of the major music companies. Its members comprise the most vibrant record industry in the world. RIAA® members create, manufacture and/or distribute approximately 85% of all legitimate recorded music produced and sold in the United States.

In support of this mission, the RIAA works to protect the intellectual property and First Amendment rights of artists and music labels; conduct consumer, industry and technical research; and monitor and review state and federal laws, regulations and policies. The RIAA® also certifies Gold®, Platinum®, Multi-Platinum™ and Diamond sales awards as well as Los Premios De Oro y Platino™, an award celebrating Latin music sales.

Contact:
Jonathan Lamy
Cara Duckworth
Liz Kennedy
202/775-0101