Every year rights holders get to offer their input in the U.S. Trade Representative’s Special 301 report, identifying piracy sites and offering recommendations on how best to combat piracy both online and offline. In a special letter, Wii, Wii U and 3DS maker Nintendo offers its two cents on the issue. First, Nintendo points out that it is suffering major losses at the hands of online piracy:
"Nintendo, along with its publishers and developers, is injured by the prevalence and ease of illegal online distribution,” the company explains in their letter. "In the past few years, the scope of online piracy for Nintendo has grown dramatically. Every month tens of thousands of illegal Nintendo game files are detected on the Internet. The legal environment to limit the flow of these files remains extremely challenging."
Nintendo goes on to say that it wants countries such as Mexico, China, Brazil and Spain to be listed on the Government’s copyright watch list this year, and that specific actions should be taken in each of the countries. Nintendo says that these specific countries have extremely high levels of game piracy, and the lack any kind of enforcement. Nintendo also single out Brazil which it claims is the worst of the worst when it comes to pirating their games.
The company recommends that some high-profile cases against online pirates and site owners in the country would help deter infringers from committing the same offenses.
"Publicize legal actions and raids taken against infringers, especially for online piracy, to increase awareness and deterrence," notes Nintendo.
Another thing Nintendo recommends is stronger penalties against online pirates as well as criminal prosecutions of major infringers.
"Bring criminal prosecutions of major infringers, including those facilitating piracy on the Internet," Nintendo writes. "The courts must impose stronger penalties against IP crimes (both traditional forms of piracy and online piracy) to raise awareness and foster deterrence."
Nintendo calls for stronger laws from Brazil's government:
"Adopt and strictly enforce new laws that explicitly protect against the circumvention of technical protection measures and trafficking in circumvention devices; hold Internet Service Providers responsible for facilitating piracy under certain circumstances including a requirement that ISPs take down infringing content when notified by a rights holder representative," the company notes.
Nintendo makes similar suggestions for Spain, noting that Spain’s Intellectual Property Commission should block foreign file-sharing and cyberlocker sites and allocate more resources to prosecuting infringers both online and offline.
"Since so many illegal video games are downloaded in Spain from foreign-based cyberlockers, and accessed through cyberlinkers or P2P linking sites hosted outside Spain, the IPC must address this issue by authorizing the blocking of linking sites," the letter reads. "Courts should be provided with greater resources to take on additional IP cases. Due to an overloaded Spanish judicial system, IP cases move too slowly to resolution."
Finally, Nintendo recommends similar changes to laws in Mexico and China, but also wants something to be done about circumvention devices in those regions (they are referring to devices that allow for the copying and bulk storage of games like the R4).