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MPAA Fights Piracy By Offering Search Site to Help Audiences Find Movies and TV Shows They Love Online

Photo of Anne Thompson By Anne Thompson | Thompson on Hollywood May 15, 2013 at 3:53PM

In yet another move in its ongoing crusade against piracy, on Wednesday the lobbying organization the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA), which reps six major studios launched the new website WhereToWatch.Org, in order to give audiences a "one-stop site to find legal, seamless viewing options."
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Where To Watch
Where To Watch


In yet another move in its ongoing crusade against piracy, on Wednesday the lobbying organization the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA), which reps six major studios, launched the new website WhereToWatch.Org, in order to give audiences a "one-stop site to find legal, seamless viewing options."

I have to admit that looking at the site, I was gobsmacked by the plethora of online viewing choices. No wonder theater owners are worried. Now if the site was really putting their money into something useful, rather than just offering links to sites where you can search for titles, they'd do what Reid Rosefelt's short-lived but brilliant site SpeedCine did: allow you to search for a title and all the places it was available would come up, with links. Now that would be a resource. This way you have to hunt and peck around. But it's a step in the right direction.

The idea was for the site "to serve as a resource for audiences to access movies and TV shows seamlessly and legally," according to the press release. "Today’s media landscape offers audiences the opportunity to watch movies and television shows in more ways than ever before, an environment created in part through a copyright system that empowers creativity and promotes innovation."

Senator Chris Dodd, Chairman and CEO of the MPAA, emphasized the importance of delivering content in new, creative ways:

“Audiences want seamless access to film and TV shows. Our industry has listened, and we are now delivering more choices that ever before. There have never been more ways to access movies and television legitimately online, and those platforms continue to grow and develop thanks in large part to a copyright system that encourages innovation, risk and growth. The companies I represent are committed to continuing to create and develop the best ways for audiences to enjoy the entertainment they love.”

This article is related to: MPAA, Web/Tech


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Born and raised in Manhattan, Anne Thompson grew up going to the Thalia and The New Yorker and wound up at grad Cinema Studies at NYU. She worked at United Artists and Film Comment before heading west as that magazine's west coast editor. She wrote for the LA Weekly, Sight and Sound, Empire, The New York Times and Entertainment Weekly before serving as West Coast Editor of Premiere. She wrote for The Washington Post, The London Observer, Wired, More, and Vanity Fair, and did staff stints at The Hollywood Reporter and Variety. She eventually took her blog Thompson on Hollywood to Indiewire. She taught film criticism at USC Critical Studies, and continues to host the fall semester of “Sneak Previews” for UCLA Extension.