US judge delivers potential landmark ruling, says Internet TV should be treated like cable

“In a potential landmark ruling that could have a dramatic effect on the media landscape, a US federal judge has suggested that an online TV service should be treated like a traditional cable company,” James Vincent reports for The Verge.

“District Court Judge George W. Wu ruled that streaming company FilmOn could ‘potentially’ be entitled to a compulsory license to retransmit broadcasters’ copyrighted content — a privilege that has previously been denied to other internet streaming services including Ivi and Aereo,” Vincent reports. “The advisory is not final however, and in recognition of its ‘significant commercial importance,’ Wu has submitted it to a higher court of appeal for further scrutiny.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: We’ll see if it survives the court of appeal.


  1. I’ve only just discovered it. Works a treat in Sicily for watching UK films. Like the 19th century BBC, it’s time these Luddites got out of the way of progress!

  2. Comparing this situation to the Aereo case is ENTIRELY WRONG. Aereo didn’t give a rat’s about licensing anything and insisted they didn’t have to. If anything, this simply puts another nail in the Aereo case.

    Meanwhile, if a company like FilmOn can pursue a license to rebroadcast, then fine! Nothing-at-all will ever require a company like Fox to be required to provide that license to FilmOn. Nothing.

    However, as the rotten old lousy cable TV business fittingly corrodes and dies, we all know Fox etc. will WANT their programs rebroadcast on the Internet. If they have a brain in their heads they’ll be doing the rebroadcasting THEMSELVES. The only thing stopping them is their own tech-ignorance and their Luddite intransigence. The big four over-the-air broadcasters have already made significant moves to make their programming available on the net. Hulu is the single best example, a conglomerate of programs from NBC, ABC and Fox.

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