A comic book that talks on dangers of online piracy

MUMBAI: School children across the country will soon be learning about the dangers of online film piracy through a comic book entitled ‘Escape from Terror Byte City‘, launched by the recently formed Bollywood-Hollywood anti-piracy coalition.

A local adaption of a comic originally developed by New Zealand Federation Against Copyright Theft, the book tells the story of two boys who are trapped in a virtual city after downloading an unauthorised copy of a film from a peer-to-peer file sharing site.

The comic book, endorsed by the Department of Information Technology, Mumbai Police, Data Security Council of India (DSCI) and the National Association of Software and Services Companies (NASSCOM), will be published in three languages Hindi, Marathi and English.

In the coming months, 10,000 comic books will be distributed in Mumbai to children aged five to ten in schools, multiplexes and malls.

Revealing the intention behind bringing out the comic book, UTV Motion Pictures vice president Prakash Nathan said, "Internet piracy is becoming increasingly rampant among online audiences. We must begin to reach out to people across age brackets and social strata.

"School children are at an impressionable age and do not always know the distinction between legal and illegal. The comic book is a valuable step in educating them about online piracy."

Internet piracy jeopardises the ability of a film to make money and impacts the level of investment available for new films.

Averred Motion Picture Dist Association (India) MD Rajiv Dalal, "As the first building block of our brand-new educational initiative, we are targeting kids who are influenced by what they read and see.

"We hope that putting this in comic form makes the message more accessible, interesting and exciting to the children. We look forward to working with the Ministry of Human Resource Development to extend this initiative and have this comic distributed to all school children across the country."

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