After months of apocalyptic warnings about the global threat ofpiracy the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) is ready to unleash itsfirst nationwide US educational campaign.

Starting on Thursday (July 24) a series of 30-second publicservice announcements produced by 20th Century Fox will air on more than 35network and cable outlets during the first prime time break.

The following day every major exhibitor in the country will play65-second trailers in all screens in more than 5,000 theatres across the US.

The theatrical trailers and television spots will featuretestimony from above and below-the-line talent explaining the adverse effectsof piracy on the industry and its employees.

The campaign was created under the auspices of the MPAA's publicaffairs council and senior representatives from the seven major studios, whomthe MPAA estimates lose between $3bn and $4bn to piracy each year.

It will also appear online at, a new website explaining the implicationsof digital piracy that will eventually offer intellectual property teachingresources.

The MPAA, which last year begun lobbying universities to adoptanti-piracy charters, also plans to dovetail its information campaign witheducational courses for younger students.

It has linked up with the Junior Achievement Organisation tointroduce a "digital citizenship" into classrooms this autumn.

Junior Achievement instructors in more than 36,000 classrooms willteach students about copyright and the effects of infringement, culminating ina nationwide competition to find the student who expresses the dangers ofpiracy in the most heartfelt and effective way.

David S Chernow, president and chief executive officer of JuniorAchievement Inc, welcomed the initiative, as a timely way of instructingstudents in ethics, adding: "Copyrights are an important part of our economy."

"Digital piracy stands to damage not only our industry but thecountless diverse businesses that depend on copyright protection," JackValenti, president and chief executive officer of the MPAA, said in astatement.

"As our campaign continues to expand, we will be reaching out tothose industries to join us in our commitment to educating the public, which isa crucial component in solving this problem."