REVENUE SOURCE:Advertising agencies would be asked not to place ads on Web sites specified by the Infringing Website List, which would be updated every month.

The nation’s largest associations of intellectual property rights owners and advertising agencies yesterday inked a memorandum of understanding (MOU) on the Infringing Website List (IWL) in a bid to protect the intellectual property rights of the nation’s content providers.

The list is a measure adopted by the US, the UK and Hong Kong to block the advertising revenues of piracy sites based on a list of illegal Web sites.

“We believe that the IWL can effectively threaten piracy sites, as advertising is the main revenue contributor for them,” Intellectual Property Office Director-General Sherry Hong (洪淑敏), who oversaw the MOU signing ceremony, told a news conference.

The UK’s IWL program in February reduced the number of digital ads on illegal Web sites by 64 percent from a year earlier, Hong said, citing data from the London Police’s Intellectual Property Crime Unit.

The Taiwan Intellectual Property Alliance, which represents industry associations of record companies, animation studios, publishers, film studios and software developers, would update the IWL and notify the Taipei Association of Advertising Agencies on a monthly basis, alliance representative Robin Lee (李瑞斌) said.

The association would pass the list on to more than 140 domestic and international advertising agencies, suggesting they do not to place ads on the specified sites, association chairman Evan Teng (鄧博文) said.

Deng said the association received the first list that specified 10 Web sites from the alliance last month and transferred it to its members, which control a combined online and offline advertising budget of nearly NT$12 billion (US$399 million) per year.

Hong said Google, which is not an association member, expressed its support for the program and said that it is willing to receive the list as a reference.

The Internet protocol (IP) addresses of piracy sites are mainly located in China and the US, Hong said, adding that the office has been in contact with Chinese authorities over piracy issues in accordance with the Cross-Strait Agreement on Intellectual Property Right Protection and Cooperation.

The office in February signed an intellectual property enforcement MOU with the US and offered Taiwan’s IWL to the nation last month, and is waiting for US authorities to take action against the illegal Web sites, Hong said.

The most popular piracy site in Taiwan for illegally downloading movies is (伊莉討論區), whose IP address routes to the US, Hong said, citing information from the Motion Picture Association of America.