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NCC Raids Copyright Infringement Prone Outlets in Abuja

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Enforcement Officers of the Nigerian Copyright Commission (NCC) in line with the Commission’s Zero Tolerance for Piracy initiative recently embarked on inspection, monitoring and sensitization of literary and Optical Disc Distribution outlets in Abuja.

The exercise was borne out of the need to address and checkmate cases of Copyright infringement following rising complaints by rights owners and the need to ensure that original copyright protected works were sold in the Federal capital Territory.

Mr. Augustine Amodu, Director of Enforcement, NCC, who disclosed this in a report in Abuja noted that, the exercise is strategic as it will enable Operatives of the Commission understand the operation mode of dealers and distributors of works and familiarize with their terrain and locations.

Mr. Amodu, driven by the zeal to ensure strategic engagement with stakeholders and effective coverage, structured the copyright Inspectors into two (2) teams for the purpose of the exercise.

Team One led by Barrister Ihuma Okwu  Moses (PCO) carried out thorough and detailed inspection of outlets in Garki and Gudu Areas of the FCT while Team Two led by Mr. Chukwuemeka Ngene (PCO) did same in Karu (FCT), Nyanya,  Jikwoyi, and Mararaba axis of Nasarawa State respectively.

The teams inspected Schools, Markets and Optical discs outlets within their areas of coverage.

At Garki, team 1 visited two markets and inspected Academy Bookshop, World Chris Bookshop, Bright Mind Bookshop, Kind Link ventures Bookshop, John Bosco Bookshop, Tony Don Bookshop, Chinedu Bookshop, Uncle Rising Bookshop, Mnouka bookshop and Donald Kaga Bookshop,

The team observed substantial quantity of pirated books on display in almost all the Bookshops. The proprietors were sensitized and urged to remove the pirated books from the market and ensure that only original copies of books were found in their shops.

Proprietors of visited Bookshops expressed their appreciation for the exercise as it has awakened their consciousness on the need to embark on legitimate business. They craved the indulgence of the Commission to foster a synergy between Bookshop Proprietors and Publishers to enhance supply of original books.

The proprietors attributed the high incidence of pirated books in the market to the lack of synergy between Booksellers and Publishers who prefer to sell directly to schools leaving them with the option of sourcing their consignment from the available market which might not be legitimate.

On a visit to Area 1 Shopping Centre, Optical disc (CDs/DVDs) stocks inspected were found to be pirated as the sellers took to their heels on citing the copyright inspectors. The Chairman of the Plaza was cautioned against displaying of pirated products for sale as the act will not be tolerated on the next visit of the Inspectors.

Similarly, the Team 2 officials by Chukwuemeka Ngene visited Noble Heights Academy Karu, Aja International Academy Karu, Cherry Field Academy Jikwoyi, Bookshops and Optical Disc dealers in the affected areas.

The team observed that some of the schools visited claimed to purchase textbooks from Publishers but could not present any receipt of purchase from publishers while other sellers could not prove the sources of literary works, optical discs sold to Pupils , Students and general public.

Some of the proprietors were invited to the commission for further inverstigation while others were cautioned and sensitized on the policies and programmes of the Commission against piracy. The officers urged the stakeholders to adhere strictly to the provisions of the Nigerian Copyright laws, CAP C28, LFN, 2004.

Some of the operators and members of the public called for the sustenance of the exercise as it will not only enhance the image of the Commission but also remind pirates of the consequences of their actions.

The exercise generated multiple successes as the officers used the opportunity to gather some intelligence, sensitize operators and the general public and also trigger investigation activities on the sources of literary works distributed by affected schools.

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Google Sets Higher Bar for YouTube Partner Program

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Youtube winner.jpg

By peter oluka

Google, in an effort to regain advertisers’ trust, is announcing what it says are “tough but necessary” changes to YouTube monetization.

For one thing, it’s setting a higher bar for the YouTube Partner Program, which is what allows publishers to make money through advertising. Previously, they needed 10,000 total views to join the program. Starting today, channels also need to have 1,000 subscribers and 4,000 hours of view time in the past year. (For now, those are just requirements to join the program, but Google says it will also start applying them to current partners on February 20.)

This might assure marketers that their ads are less likely to run on random, fly-by-night channels, but as Google’s Paul Muret writes, “Of course, size alone is not enough to determine whether a channel is suitable for advertising.”

So in addition, he said:

“We will closely monitor signals like community strikes, spam, and other abuse flags to ensure they comply with our policies. Both new and existing YPP channels will be automatically evaluated under this strict criteria and if we find a channel repeatedly or egregiously violates our community guidelines, we will remove that channel from YPP. As always, if the account has been issued three community guidelines strikes, we will remove that user’s accounts and channels from YouTube”.

Muret also described changes planned for the more exclusive Google Preferred program, which is supposed to be limited to the best and most popular content. Vlogger Logan Paul was part of Google Preferred until the controversy over his “suicide forest” video got him kicked out last week — a story that suggests some of the limitations to Google’s approach.

Moving forward, Muret said the program will offer “not only … the most popular content on YouTube, but also the most vetted.” That means everything in Google Preferred should be manually curated, with ads only running “on videos that have been verified to meet our ad-friendly guidelines.” (Looks like all those new content moderators will be busy.)

Lastly, Muret said YouTube will be introducing a new “three-tier suitability system” in the next few months, aimed at giving marketers more control over the trade-off between running ads in safer environments versus reaching more viewers, according to a report by TechCrunch.

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Suspected Herdsmen Kidnaps, Tortures Nollywood Star

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Calabar Chic

A victim of kidnapping along the Benin Bypass-Lagos highway, Calabar Chic, Nollywood actress and entertainer, has questions what the security operatives are doing to safeguard the lives and properties of Nigerians.

 

In an emotional Instagram post raw with feelings of despair, the actress called on the government to “wake up to its responsibilities.” She admonishes the federal government to “stop cooking excuses and take action.”

 

The actress made the call after she and friend she identifies as Dozie were kidnapped by heavily armed Fulani herdsman who robbed, beat and starved them of food and water. She revealed that the incident took place along the Benin Bypass-Lagos highway.

 

She stated they were held hostage for 4 days and were released after a ransom was paid on their behalf. She also said the men heavily armed have access to “different kinds of guns” and she wondered about “who supplies them with those weapons.”

 

The actress also said that the Fulani herdsmen boasted about killing them and having no regard for the sanctity of human life, saying no one will touch them.

 

Her words: “We go continue dey kill una all of you, nothing go happen! We no care about any human life we slaughter you into pieces and bury you nothing go happen“, the Fulani herdsmen told them.

 

See the post in full lightly edited for clarity

@calabar_chic:SO MANY QUESTIONS I WANT TO ASK BUT WHO WILL PROVIDE ANSWERS? OUR SECURITY AGENCIES? FEDERAL GOVT OR THE PRESIDENT HIMSELF?Because I’m still in shock, confused and wondering if we are safe in this country at all! “WHY HAS THE GOVT NOT SHOWN ANY WILLINGNESS TO CHECKMATE THESE MURDEROUS FULANI HERDSMEN? WHY? ATTACKING, MAIMING AND KILLING PEOPLE FREELY! “THESE ANIMALS WHO SEE KILLING AS A HOBBY! THEY ARE NOT SHAKEN OR SCARED LIKE THEY TOLD MY FRIEND DOZIE AND I WHEN THEY HELD US HOSTAGE IN THAT FOREST: ‘We go continue dey kill una all of you, nothing go happen! We no care about any human life we slaughter you into pieces and bury you nothing go happen’ My heart froze, I was paralyzed with fear!These animals as I will forever refer to them carry out these operations at ease as this happened just a few poles away from SARS office on Benin Bypass/ Lagos road.

On that Monday they stormed the highway around midday opened fire on our car took us off the highway after robbing us of cash and other valuables. At first, we thought they were just armed robbers until we walked for almost 2hrs deep into the forest with them then it dawned on me that this was not just robbery.

“(They) kept us for 4 horrible days inside that scary dangerous forest, starved us – no food or water for 2 days until the third day when they served us unclean water to drink. MY GOD!!!

“Or the unripe pineapple they forced us to eat on the third day that got my whole mouth teeth and gum bleeding! How could I even sleep? With ants, bugs spiders and other deadly insects crawling all over your body and you dare not scream!

4 horrible days accompanied by constant slaps and kicking at the slightest provocation. The different kinds of guns they had on them, and I kept asking myself ‘HOW DO THEY GET THESE AMMUNITIONS? WHO SUPPLIES THEM THOSE WEAPONS? Different rifles including their daggers and cutlass with which they flogged us with.

“We survived through all of it not because of sheer luck! Of course, money was involved but some other people might not get so lucky.

MEANWHILE SECURITY OPERATIVES IN NIGERIA SHOULD WAKE UP TO THEIR RESPONSIBILITIES! FEDERAL GOVERNMENT STOP COOKING UP EXCUSES AND TAKE ACTION!”

 

 

 

 

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Controversy @ COSON as Okoroji, Omorogbe Lay Claims to Chair

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The last big news to come from the Copyright Society of Nigeria (COSON) in 2017 was the replacement of its long-term head Tony Okoroji with artist manager Efe Omorogbe.

Efe Omorogbe.

 

According to www.musicinafrica.net, for some, the news might have come as a surprise: Okoroji had come to be synonymous with the body.

 

For others, the report might have come on the wings of predictability, as the former boss and the organisation he presided over had been in and out of several lawsuits over the years.

 

But according to a statement issued by Omorogbe, Okoroji, who was voted out of his position on 7 December by the COSON board, was deposed for other reasons, including the board’s “dissatisfaction with the clear conflict between him acting as Executive Chairman of COSON, and him acting as a contractor and consultant to COSON”; “Dissatisfaction with the continued engagement of companies owned by fellow directors”; and “Disapproval of the manner of handling of an earlier petition by Premier Music Publishing Company Ltd”.

 

The statement, which is titled Beyond The Noise, Mob Action And Drama: Why Okoroji Was Sacked As Coson Chairman, also noted that the board was unhappy with the terms of negotiation pertaining to the renovation of the COSON building in Ikeja, Lagos. Omorogbe’s statement was partly a response to an earlier article by Okoroji titled Take 5 Efe Omorogbe.

 

Following his removal, Okoroji convened a meeting on 19 December in which he was reinstated as head of COSON, a move Omoregbe describes as “showcasing Okoroji’s desperation to remain board chairman at all cost” because he is afraid of “the possibility of probe”.

 

Omorogbe also sets down his personal impression of Okoroji, writing that, “After a decade of dealing with Okoroji one-on-one, my opinion of him is crystal clear – he has become the biggest threat to the process of growing COSON into a world class organization”. Nonetheless the current head of COSON acknowledges that “Okoroji has done some measure of commendable work in the growth of COSON.”

 

 

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