Youth Ambassadors Scheme

Youth Ambassadors Against Internet Piracy ("Youth Ambassadors Scheme") is a scheme jointly implemented by the Customs and Excise Department (C&E) and the Intellectual Property Department (IPD). Under the scheme, C&E has enlisted the help of 13 local youth uniform organizations and their 200,000 members to form a alliance aimed at fighting illegal file-sharing activities on the Internet.

The scheme has the following 3 major objectives:

  • promoting the importance of intellectual property rights (IPRs);
  • expanding the channels for monitoring illegal Internet activities; and
  • reducing the flow of BitTorrent seeds on the internet. (BitTorrent is the most common method of file sharing in Hong Kong)

The scheme also enables local youngsters to have direct participation in fighting internet piracy and allows them to cultivate a sense of respect for others' IPR at a young age.

The "Youth Ambassadors Scheme" is also supported by representatives from six copyright organizations, representing copyright works ranging from foreign and local movies, TV series, MTV and local comics.

C&E has set up a web page and a report mechanism under the website of the Intellectual Property Rights Protection Alliance (http://www.iprpa.org). Each organization joining the scheme is assigned a unique logon password, which allows its own members to logon to the web page and report details of illegal BT file-sharing found on local discussion forums. Upon receiving the information, C&E will scan and pass data to the appropriate copyright representative. The copyright representative will then ascertain the validity of the information and notify discussion forums' webmasters to take appropriate actions, such as deleting the alleged messages with BitTorrent files from their sites.

The launching ceremony of the scheme was held together with the re-launch of IPD's "I Pledge" Campaign on 19 July 2006. Around 2,000 youth members attended the grand ceremony officiated by senior government officials, heads of the copyright owners, youth uniformed groups and some famous artists. To facilitate implementation of the scheme, C&E has provided training to some trainers of the 11 youth uniformed groups who will, in phases, train members of their own organizations.

C&E has set up a Secretariat Office with designated personnel to manage the day-to-day operation of the notification mechanism, facilitate communication with the 11 youth uniformed groups, and sustain participation of the 200,000 Youth Ambassadors. The Secretariat Office will organize a wide range of social activities and training for participating members, such as seminars, leadership training, photography competitions, gala competitions, and visits to production venue of copyright works as well as publication of the "Youth Ambassador Newsletter".

Participating Youth Uniform Groups

  • Hong Kong Road Safety Patrol
  • Hong Kong Air Cadet Corps
  • The Boys' Brigade, Hong Kong
  • Civil Aid Service (Cadet Corps)
  • The Hong Kong Girl Guides Association
  • Hong Kong Sea Cadet Corps
  • Hong Kong Adventure Corps
  • Hong Kong St. John Ambulance Brigade
  • The Girls' Brigade (Hong Kong)
  • Junior Police Call
  • Scout Association of Hong Kong
  • Auxiliary Medical Service
  • Association of Hong Kong Flag-guards

Copyright Organizations

  • International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (Hong Kong Group) Limited
  • Hong Kong, Kowloon and New Territories Motion Picture Industry Association Limited
  • Hong Kong Film & Video Security Limited affiliated with Motion Picture Association
  • Television Broadcasts Limited
  • Asian Television Limited
  • Hong Kong Comics & Animation Federation

For more details, please visit: http://www.iprpa.org/eng/anti_campaign.php