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SCOUTS STEP IN THE PICTURE TO STOP PIRACY MPAA OFFERS ACTIVITY BADGE.

Byline: GREG HERNANDEZ Staff Writer

With trustworthiness being one of the key components of Scout law, the movie industry is turning to a new ally in its battle against movie piracy: the Boy Scouts of America.

The Motion Picture Association of America, which represents the interests of the major movie studios, on Friday unveiled an anti-piracy program that enables Scouts in the Los Angeles area council to earn an activity patch.

``They approached us about working together on a project,'' MPAA Chairman and CEO Dan Glickman said. ``There is particular significance in California because of the number of (movie industry) jobs here. It's a fascinating experiment with kids who grow up in an area where the creative world is such an important economic force.''

To complete the program, Scouts must demonstrate their knowledge of copyright law and why copyrights matter. They also must be able to identify five types of copyrighted works and name ways that such material can be stolen.

``We have this ongoing effort trying to reach young people to effectively provide an opportunity to get responsible attitudes on intellectual property,'' Glickman said. ``It's educating people before they may become involved or believe that intellectual property rights are not important.''

Victor Zuniga, of the Boy Scouts of America Los Angeles area council, said more than 52,000 Scouts in more than 34 cities have the opportunity to participate. It is the first of the seven councils in Southern California to implement the program, with others expected to follow. ``A Scout is trustworthy,'' Zuniga said. ``When you take the values of the Scout program, obviously stealing is not being a trustworthy member of society. Kids sometimes are not aware they may be committing a crime. I think education is real key to that.''

Among the activities the Scouts have the option of completing are creating a public service announcement, writing a pamphlet or brochure, or writing and performing a skit about why copyright protection is important. Other options are researching peer-to-peer Web sites or visiting a movie studio with the Scouting troop.

Earlier this year, the MPAA released a study that showed that the major movie studios lost an estimated $6.1billion in 2005 because of Internet piracy, bootlegging and illegal copying of their films.

The losses are far bigger than any previous annual estimates and showed that Internet piracy, which accounted for $2.3billion of the losses, is now nearly matching the losses for street sales of bootlegged copies, which totaled $2.4billion. The remaining $1.4billion was lost to the illegal copying of films.

greg.hernandez(at)dailynews.com

(818)713-3758

BEING GOOD SCOUTS

Here are three ways Boy Scouts can earn an activity patch from the Motion Picture Association of America.

Movie: Watch it all the way through the credits. Assess who would be hurt if it were stolen. Explain what a bootleg DVD looks like and how people can avoid buying one.

Video game: Play it. ID the designers and describe game elements that are copyrightable.

Music: Play a favorite CD for the troop leader. Tell him why you like it. List all the people who contributed to making it and what they did.

Source: Motion Picture Association of America

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BEING GOOD SCOUTS (see text)
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Title Annotation:Business
Publication:Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)
Date:Oct 21, 2006
Words:551
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