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Sunday, December 3, 2023

Intellectual property violations: Dangers and consequences of digital piracy

Imagine a world without authors, writers, content creators, editors, and artists. It is not a far-fetched scenario if people keep disrespecting others’ works and if copyright infringement and intellectual property (IP) violations persist.

While digital information provides convenience and flexibility, its underlying issues harm many, including the academe and content providers.

In an age when instant access to knowledge is crucial, some people are quick to forget the need to respect writers’ and publishers’ intellectual property. Most information or content can be freely distributed online without limitations, making them prone to being replicated without authorization.

Rex Education launched its anti-piracy campaign at the Manila International Book Fair (MIBF) 2022.

Sadly, some violations are happening in broad daylight and have become normalized:

  • Photocopy shops, sometimes in schools or near them, making unauthorized copies of books
  • Sharing and distributing copyrighted materials, such as articles, photographs, and movies, through online platforms without permission or licensing
  • Plagiarizing or copying substantial portions of copyrighted content without proper attribution or citations in assignments, papers, or presentations

While there may be valid reasons, these are disrespectful, unethical, and possibly illegal practices in so far as RA 8293 or the Intellectual Property Code of the Philippines is concerned.

Every year, industries suffer significant revenue losses because of digital piracy. According to a Media Partners Asia report, the Philippines lost $781 million in revenues in 2022 due to online video piracy alone. If this is not addressed, experts project that the illicit industry will have 31 million users by 2027 and leak $1 billion annually. This poses a major risk to the country’s economy due to billions of dollars in revenue losses for legitimate content producers, and many individuals may lose their jobs if their companies suffer from it.

On the academic side, there is the never-ending problem of textbook piracy. If this persists, many publishers fear that creating high-quality content in the educational sector will become more difficult due to unsustainable losses from piracy. Authors may also lose motivation because the fruit of their hard work is not adequately compensated and, worse, not protected.

Last year, Rex Education launched its anti-piracy campaign at the Manila International Book Fair (MIBF) 2022, encouraging consumers and institutions to stand against piracy, protect intellectual property, and support the local book publishing industry. This is also a call to action to continue raising awareness and educating Filipinos about the damaging effects of piracy.

(For more information on Rex Education’s anti-piracy campaign, you may read You may also contact

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