LOS ANGELES -- The Alliance for Creativity and Entertainment (ACE), the leading global coalition dedicated to protecting the dynamic legal market for creative content and reducing online piracy, today announced the addition of Comcast and Viacom as members. While NBCUniversal and Paramount Pictures were already ACE members, the addition of their parent companies will strengthen ACE's comprehensive approach to disrupting a piracy ecosystem that harms creators. Comcast is the first internet service provider (ISP) to join ACE.
Comcast is a global media and technology company with three primary businesses: Comcast Cable, NBCUniversal, and Sky. Comcast Cable is one of the United States' largest video, high-speed internet, and phone providers to residential customers under the Xfinity brand. NBCUniversal operates news, entertainment and sports cable networks, the NBC and Telemundo broadcast networks, television production operations, television station groups, Universal Pictures, and Universal Parks and Resorts. Sky is one of Europe's leading media and entertainment companies. It operates the Sky News broadcast network and sports and entertainment networks, produces original content, and has exclusive content rights.
Viacom creates entertainment experiences that drive conversation and culture around the world. Through television, film, digital media, live events, merchandise and solutions, its brands connect with diverse, young and young at heart audiences in more than 180 countries. In addition to Paramount Pictures, Viacom's portfolio includes some of the world's most popular media networks including MTV, Nickelodeon, Comedy Central and BET.
ACE was founded in June 2017 by 30 creative companies who sought to expand ongoing, cooperative efforts to reduce the threat and prevalence of online piracy. Last year alone, there were an estimated 5.4 billion downloads of pirated films and television shows and 21.4 billion total visits to streaming piracy sites worldwide. This conservatively costs $29.2 billion to as much as $71 billion annually in lost domestic revenues, according to a recent study from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce's Global Innovation Policy Center. Piracy also harms consumers – one-third of pirate sites target them with malware that can lead to a range of problems, including identify theft and financial loss, according to a report by Digital Citizens Alliance.
Since its inception, ACE has achieved successful litigations against piracy device sellers and providers of unauthorized content and their operators like Vader Streams, SetTVNow, Tickbox, and Dragon Box, and collaborated with law enforcement investigations and actions around the world. ACE draws upon the global antipiracy resources of the Motion Picture Association (MPA) in concert with the internal antipiracy expertise of the coalition members.
With today's additions, the full roster of ACE members includes Amazon, AMC Networks, BBC Worldwide, Bell Canada and Bell Media, Canal+ Group, CBS Corporation, Channel 5, Comcast, Constantin Film, Discovery, Foxtel, Grupo Globo, HBO, Hulu, Lionsgate, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM), Millennium Media, NBCUniversal, Netflix, Paramount Pictures, SF Studios, Sky, Sony Pictures Entertainment, Star India, Studio Babelsberg, STX Entertainment, Telefe, Telemundo, Televisa, Univision Communications Inc., Viacom, Village Roadshow, Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures, and Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.