•Film stakeholders seek policy to drive FG’s creative economy drive
Governor of Lagos State, Babajide Sanwo-Olu and the Minister of Arts, Culture and Creative Economy, Hannatu Musawa, have called for a global framework that promotes responsible content creation, distribution and consumption.
This, according to them, would bring about quality, safety and ethical standards in digital media.
This was just as film stakeholders equally called on the federal government to provide enabling policy that would allow the industry to self-regulate itself in order to meet the current President’s drives in the creative industry.
Speaking at the ongoing Third Peace Anyiam Osigwe Nigeria Digital Content Regulation Conference (NDCRC) in Lagos, Sanwo-Olu said despite the achievement of the industry the absence of global standards was posing several challenges.
He said in this age of digitalisation, where contents could be easily accessed and shared across borders, it was crucial to establish guidelines that ensure the quality, safety and ethical standards of digital media.
He stressed that the country must also address a pressing concern, especially the need for global standards to regulate digital content.
According to him, when there are no proper guidelines it becomes challenging to protect the intellectual property rights of our filmmakers.
He said, “Without proper regulations, their work can be infringed upon, leading to financial losses and discouragement of creative talent. Additionally, the absence of standards may result in the proliferation of pirated and low-quality content, which not only harms the reputation of our industry but also affects the revenue streams of our filmmakers.
“Furthermore, the lack of global standards for regulating digital content raises concerns about the impact on our cultural values and societal norms.
“As content travels across borders, it is essential to ensure that it respects the diversity and sensitivities of different cultures. The absence of guidelines can potentially lead to the spread of content that may be offensive, inappropriate, or harmful to certain communities.”
However, to address these concerns, the governor noted that, “it is imperative that we work together, not only at the state or national level but also on an international scale. We should collaborate with fellow nations, industry experts, and regulatory bodies to establish a framework that promotes responsible content creation, distribution, and consumption.”
Represented by the Permanent Secretary, Lagos Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture
Mrs. Oloruntoyin Atekoja, the governor said, this framework should encompass guidelines for intellectual property protection, content quality standards, age restrictions, and cultural sensitivity.
He explained that it should also include mechanisms for effective enforcement and cooperation among nations to combat piracy and copyright infringement.
According to him, “I am committed to supporting the growth of our film industry while ensuring that it upholds the highest standards of creativity, ethics, and cultural sensitivity.
“I call upon all stakeholders – filmmakers, industry associations, regulatory bodies, and international partners to join hands with us in shaping global standards for regulating digital content.
“Together, let us protect the intellectual property of our filmmakers, promote high-quality content, and preserve the cultural fabric of our society. By doing so, we can pave the way for a thriving and globally respected film industry that not only entertains but also inspires and unites people from all walks of life.”
For her part, Musawa, said innovations in technology, the growth of broadband infrastructure, and the proliferation of digital screens had combined to create a fascinating new order.
Represented by her SA Film and Music, Baba Agba, Musawa, said this new order has provided the ability to deliver even more audio-visual products, adding that Nigeria would continue to provide the enabling environment for digital businesses to thrive.
According to her, “Let me assure you, that the administration of His Excellency, President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, is focused on promoting and attracting investments and partnerships in and to Nigeria and is keen to create the right framework that encourages ease of doing business, serves the public interest and helps us achieve our collective aspirations for this key sector of the economy.”
Also speaking at the event, the Executive Director/ CEO, NFVCB, Adedayo Thomas, said the objective of the conference was primarily to discuss the growth of the film industry and evaluate concerns around global standards for regulation of digital contents in the face of advances in the development of cutting-edge technologies.