Daily Dose: Time Warner Cable finally reached an agreement to carry Fox Sports San Diego, home to the San Diego Padres. Time Warner Cable also struck a new deal to carry Fox's YES Network, the New York sports channel that carries the Yankees. The moves come as Time Warner Cable tries to get other distributors in Los Angeles to carry its SportsNet LA, which will be the new home for theDodgers. Time Warner Cable knows it would look bad for them to be refusing to carry regional sports networks in other markets while at the same time trying to sell its own very expensive channel.
Tough times for wranglers. Animal trainers and wranglers, those folks who often make big stars out of four-legged creatures, fear they are becoming endangered species. Not only is technology cutting into their business, activists are also pushing for much tighter restrictions on the use of animals in movies and television shows. The Los Angeles Times looks at the plight of the animal wrangler.
Cloudy forecast. DirecTV's decision to drop the Weather Channel in favor of the smaller network WeatherNation has some weather aficionados very upset. WeatherNation is described by some Weather Channel fans as a poor substitute that doesn't provide in-depth coverage. At the same time, other Weather Channel fans are hopeful that the contract dispute will persuade the network to stick to its knitting and get out of the reality TV business. More on WeatherNation from the Associated Press.
Get ready for the lawsuits. Alki David, an entrepreneur whose inventions always seem to attract lawsuits from big media, has a new service that lets people watch local TV stations from anywhere around the country. David thinks this will be blessing for independent stations that will now get a chance to broaden their reach, Problem is, of course, many stations are restricted with regard to the markets in which they can air the programming they've acquired. Oh and David is doing this without asking permission of the stations. More on David's latest move to antagonize from the Financial Times.
Mystery solved. That "Dumb Starbucks" that opened up in Los Feliz on Friday turned out to be a stunt for comedian Nathan Fielder's Comedy Central show "Nathan For You." Fielder held an impromptu news conference Monday afternoon at the store, which was jampacked over the weekend. Guessing Starbucks will call off the legal eagles and just enjoy the free publicity. Details from the Los Angeles Times and Wall Street Journal.
Sad day on the Good Ship Lollipop. Child star Shirley Temple Black, who lit up the big screen during the Depression and then went on to serve her country as a diplomat died at the age of 85. Temple sang and danced her way into the hearts of Americans in movies such as "Bright Eyes" and "The Little Colonel." She had 40 movies under her belt before she was a teenager. In 1969, President Nixon made her a delegate to the United Nations and she later became ambassador to Ghana. Obituaries from the Los Angeles Times, New York Times and Variety.]]>
“I’m tired of the majors screwing you, screwing me, and screwing the entire industry, by trying to shut down progress,” said Alki David, founder/chief executive officer of Internet-delivered TV service FilmOn.
Meanwhile, broadcast networks, major cable networks, and TV providers like Time Warner Cable continue to lose business -- viewers, ratings and/or subscribers.
For media companies, large and small, it’s important to make progress and to give people not so fortunate what they really need: cheaper entertainment. (Still, food, housing, fossil fuels and health care might be a tad more important.)
Let’s drill down further to what is really needed entertainment-wise. Unlimited choice at a cheap price? Sounds like that runs counter to TV economics -- make that, any economics.
Then there is usage -- TV and otherwise. A new research report shows that in some areas, 80% of consumers don’t come close to fully using all their Internet capacity.
Still, we see comments like this one from Tony Wible, an analyst with Janney Capital Markets: "Broadband is the gatekeeper to the cloud… "There's insatiable demand for broadband."
The reason for the discrepancy could be that not everyone is using equally. For example Netflix usage sucks up to 30% of U.S. bandwidth for just 1% of the population.
Couple this with other longtime TV research showing that of hundreds of available channels, viewers watch from five to nine of them on average. We have is a blind eye in following what entertainment consumers are really doing. Other studies show an additional disconnect: People who own smart TVs use hardly any Web features.
All this suggests that TV, now and in the near term, seems to be a medium of some waste. No problem there. The issue is the size of the spillage.]]>
Fred Armisen to Lead Seth Meyers’ Late Night Band (THR / The Live Feed)
Fred Armisen is joining Seth Meyers at Late Night. The musician andPortlandia star and his 8G Band are joining his Saturday Night Livefriend as the band leader for the revamped NBC talker. “Fred will curate and lead the band, and continue to run it even when he’s off shootingPortlandia,” Meyers tweeted Monday. Rolling Stone Armisen will sing and play guitar, and he’ll be backed by an eclectic group of players: guitarist Seth Jabour (Les Savy Fav), bassist Syd Butler (Les Savy Fav), keyboardist Eli Janney (Girls Against Boys) and drummer Kim Thompson (Beyoncé’s touring band). TV Guide Before switching gears to acting, Armisen played drums in the punk rock band Trenchmouth and in the Blue Man group back in the 1990s. He also often played musical instruments during sketches on SNL. Vulture Considering Meyers and Armisen spent many years at SNL together, including during Armisen’s many character bits on “Weekend Update,” hopefully this will mean Armisen will also act as the show’s sidekick — like a hipster Paul Shaffer. LA Times / Show Tracker Meyers’ reign on Late Nightbegins Feb. 24 and his first guest will be another former SNL colleague, Amy Poehler.
Barnes & Noble Cuts Jobs at Nook Division (NYT)
The bookseller Barnes & Noble laid off employees in its Nook device unit on Monday, the latest sign of the company’s difficulties in executing its digital strategy. Fewer than 100 people have lost their jobs, a person briefed on the layoffs said. Mary Ellen Keating, a spokeswoman for Barnes & Noble, declined to comment specifically on the job eliminations, but said that the company had “no plans to exit the device business.” The Verge Despite a $300 million shot in the arm from Microsoft in 2012, the Nook has only flagged in sales, dropping 66.7 percent for the 2013 holidays as compared to 2012. Reuters Barnes & Noble shares rose by as much as 9.6 percent on Monday after news that the bookseller cut jobs from its team of hardware engineers working on its money-losing Nook digital books and e-reader business.
Michael Smerconish Joins CNN (TVNewser)
The staffing and programming changes continue at CNN with the hire of Michael Smerconish, who will host a weekly Saturday morning show from New York. Smerconish, an MSNBC contributor who has served as the guest host of Hardball With Chris Matthews for the past four years, will join CNN this month. In his new role, he will also appear across all CNN’s programming. HuffPost “We are thrilled to have Michael join CNN,” Jeff Zucker said. “At a time when the cable news landscape has become increasingly polarized, his independence and passion for reasoned dialogue makes him the perfect fit for CNN.” TheWrap Smerconish will continue hosting his radio show The Michael Smerconish Program on SiriusXM Radio and writing a weekly column for The Philadelphia Inquirer. The Washington Post / Erik Wemple The accession of Smerconish to CNN may set up a nice little tete-a-tete in weekend cable TV. Over at MSNBC, Steve Kornacki hosts the well-regarded Up With Steve Kornacki from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. Smerconish’s time slot is to be determined, a CNN spokesperson tells the Erik Wemple Blog.
Upworthy Traffic Gets Crushed (Business Insider)
In November, viral-content-for-a-cause site Upworthy posted insane traffic numbers, reaching almost 90 million people around the world, according to Quantcast. Then, in December, Facebook announced a change to the algorithm it uses to determine what kinds of updates (“stories”) users see in the News Feeds. In a blog post, Facebook said it wanted to feature more “high quality” content and fewer “meme photos.” That same month, Upworthy’s traffic dropped 25 percent — reaching 67 million people around the world between Dec. 1 and Dec. 31.
Capital New York Tweaks Prices Ahead of Paywall (Adweek)
Capital New York has tweaked its pricing as it prepares to start charging for e-newsletters and news coverage Tuesday (Feb. 11), making it the latest startup to test consumers’ willingness pay for news. The experiment will no doubt be closely watched as news sites, new and established, search for successful models for content that balance advertising and subscriber revenue. And while parent Allbritton Communications already has substantial experience charging for content in the D.C. market with Politico, it faces questions as to whether it can replicate that model in New York, where Capital is attempting to charge for media as well as City Hall and Albany coverage.
Reshuffle at Time Inc: Entertainment Weekly Taps Sports Illustrated‘s Matt Bean for Editor Post (Ad Age / Media News)
Matt Bean, managing editor of Sports Illustrated‘s website, has been named editor ofEntertainment Weekly, where he will oversee print and digital operations, according to Jess Cagle, editorial director of Entertainment Weekly and People. He began Monday and reports to Cagle. FishbowlNY “Matt’s arrival is a testament to Time Inc.’s confidence in EW,” said Cagle, in a statement. “He is a uniquely talented editor well-suited to this unique brand, and it will be a thrill to see where he and the extraordinary staff take EW in the years to come.”
Hulu Signs CBS Deal to Bring 2,600 New Episodes to Its Paid-for Hulu Plus Streaming Service (The Next Web)
Hulu has inked a new deal with CBS to bring more of the U.S. broadcaster’s programming to Hulu Plus, its subscription-based TV and movie streaming service. The deal adds 2,600 new episodes to Hulu’s library, covering classic TV shows such as The Brady Brunch, Melrose Place and Taxi, as well as more recent programming such as Everybody Loves Raymond, Undercover Boss,United States of Tara and Ghost Whisperer. The fresh content nearly doubles the 2,700 CBS episodes that were added to Hulu’s catalog in November 2012, giving new and existing Hulu Plus subscribers access to over 5,300 installments in total. Variety Titles from the previous CBS-Hulu deal include The Good Wife, CSI: Miami, The Amazing Race, I Love Lucy, Star Trek and Sabrina the Teenage Witch. CBS and Hulu have been active on the deal front as of late, having secured separate deals to deliver previous seasons of current series Blue Bloods and Elementary on an exclusive basis.
FilmOn Launches New Remote TV Service (The Financial Times)
FilmOn, the controversial start-up from Greek billionaire Alki David, is raising the stakes in the battle over the future of television with a new service that lets viewers remotely watch local television broadcasts. Through its “Teleport Technology,” a person in New York can watch local television broadcast in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago, Miami and Denver, among other U.S. cities. The free service is launching in the U.S. but could extend internationally.
‘I’m Not Laurence Fishburne!’: Reporter Asks Samuel L. Jackson About Super Bowl Spot(TVSpy)
It’s a good thing KTLA entertainment reporter Sam Rubin didn’t have Samuel L. Jackson live in the studio Monday morning after Rubin asked Jackson about his role in a Super Bowl commercial. “What Super Bowl commercial?” asked Jackson who was live via satellite on the Los Angeles CW station. “You’re as crazy as the people on Twitter. I’m not Laurence Fishburne!” Fishburne reprised his role as Morpheus in The Matrix movies for a Kia Super Bowl spot.
HLN to Become ‘First TV Home for The Social Media Generation’ (LostRemote)
HLN aims to become the TV home for the social media generation, network president Albie Hecht announced Monday. As part its full rebranding, the network will be curating its news from across social platforms and blogs, and highlight the most trending, viral stories while pointing out those social users creating the most buzz. “While others report on the conversation, HLN will be a part of it,” said @AlbieHechtHLN. TVNewser RightThisMinute will be the first new show rolled out, premiering Monday night at 10 p.m. ET. It will report on the most viral Web videos and the back stories behind them before they go viral.
BuzzFeed Denied Access to Labor Secretary Perez (Politico / Dylan Byers on Media)
A BuzzFeed reporter was denied access to labor secretary Thomas Perez on Monday despite the fact that all other reporters present at an event were given access. Labor officials told BuzzFeed reporter Chris Geidner he was being denied access because they “believed BuzzFeed would not be asking about veterans hiring” which was the focus of the event Perez was attending along with first lady Michelle Obama.
The Term ‘Digital Magazines’ May Sound Kind of Dumb, But First Look Media’s Approach Is Not (GigaOM)
Some of the new-media digerati have been having fun at the expense of First Look Media founder Pierre Omidyar, because the new company persists in describing its new family of media sites — including the just-launched Intercept from Glenn Greenwald — as “digital magazines.” Not only does the idea of a magazine seem almost antiquated by now, but most of the examples of the digital version are bloated proprietary apps from old-media standards like Vanity Fair andTime.
Can Philly Newspapers Be Saved? Should The Daily News Close? Is There A Hero in The Ownership Battle? (Philadelphia Magazine)
Writer Steve Volk is a longtime observer of the Philadelphia media scene — so he brings a substantial foundation to this month’s Philly Mag print story that takes readers inside the furious battle for control of the city’s two major daily newspapers. It is also, he swears, the end of his media reporting days. He talked this week about what he learned reporting the story, what he’s learned from his time on the beat and what’s needed to finally, fully save the Inquirer and Daily News once and for all.
AOL’s Error Leads to A Study in ‘I’m Sorry’ (NYT / DealBook)
Was Tim Armstrong’s apology authentic? Last week, I wrote about the increasing tendency of leaders and executives to provide cheap apologies as an easy way to wash away problems. Dov Seidman, founder of LRN, a firm that advises companies on their cultures and how they can translate them into better performance, described the “I’m sorry” epidemic as “apology theater.” We pledged that we would begin tracking apologies and their aftermath. Almost on cue, a highly publicized case study arrived in the form of Armstrong, the chief executive of AOL.
Bill Keller’s Legacy Is The Decline of The New York Times (Gawker)
Former New York Times editor Bill Keller’s announcement that he’s leaving the paper for a news startup is a smart move. It’s also the final act in Keller’s long history of proving that The New York Times is not as important as it once was. Bill Keller was the Times‘ top editor from 2003-2011. He was not a bad editor. He did, however, pick a sh*tty time to be editor. He got to preside over not only a good deal of quality journalism, but also the Judith Miller fiasco and the grim post-recession slew of layoffs and buyouts at the paper. His time at the top was interesting, but not altogether enjoyable. He will go down in history — through no fault of his own — as the man who guided America’s greatest newspaper into the era in which newspapers lost their spot as the most important media outlets.
The post FilmOn’s new ‘Teleport Technology’ changes the streaming game again appeared first on Digital Trends.]]>
FilmOn, a site that streams broadcast network content online, has always been a bit of an afterthought when compared to Aereo, which is much more well known. The first name FilmOn adapted, Aereokiller, should give some insight into the contentious relationship between the two. But FilmOn’s new innovation, dubbed Teleport Technology, threatens to shake-up the streaming landscape in a whole new way, and could make the company a much bigger part of the conversation.
Aereo and FilmOn’s original design concept is based around tiny antennae, which users rent for a fee. The antennae allow them to stream and record content from TV stations. After playing second fiddle to Aereo for years, FilmOn’s newest service breaks free of the antenna chain, so to speak, creating a whole new way to watch that could garner a wider audience.
The so-called Teleport Technology provides users with access to a network of hundreds of thousands of antenna-equipped remote desktop computers, essentially renting access to the devices instead of the antennae. FilmOn says the new method creates a way for users to view what they want, where they want, when they want it. After gaining access to the remote desktops from their home screen, users will be able to watch local content from 13 markets, including Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco, Chicago, Seattle, Miami, Boston, Tampa, Denver, Atlanta, Dallas, Phoenix, and Washington DC.
FilmOn’s founder, Alki David, suggests the company’s new “dynamic distribution” of broadcast content will not only help to revolutionize how people watch, but will be a boon to independent broadcasters by empowering them with new tools. David also said that FilmOn’s new tech will help disrupt the major broadcasters’ attempts to stifle innovation, saying the TV industry is at a crossroads that’s similar to the saga which surrounded the Napster era of music distribution of the late 90’s.
For their efforts to stream network content without securing licensing contracts, both FilmOn and Aereo have been embroiled in legal battles with Fox, NBC, ABC, and CBS, among others. While Aereo has skirted legal injunctions in most cases, the company’s troubles are linked in no small part to two major court battles that FilmOn lost. Not to be left out, FilmOn has asked to join in on the approaching party at the Supreme Court.
FilmOn’s new streaming method will no doubt be met with massive resistance from those who control the top four broadcast networks, but the company seems to welcome the challenge.
We’ll have to wait and see how things shake out in the courtroom, but for now, it looks like innovation has scored another victory for the little guy.]]>
Feb 3 (Reuters) - Online television service FilmOn X LLC is asking the U.S. Supreme Court to let it argue in behalf of competitor Aereo Inc, whose use of television broadcast signals is being challenged by the four major U.S. broadcasters.
The case, to be argued in April, will determine whether both companies can continue with their practice of using network content without paying licensing fees.
The broadcasters claim both services violate their copyrights and represent a threat to their ability to control subscription fees and generate advertising.
FilmOn X said in a statement on Monday that it will file court papers asking to participate in the one-hour oral argument and in the written briefing of the case.
The broadcasters, Walt Disney Co's ABC network, CBS Corp, Comcast Corp's NBCUniversal and Twenty-First Century Fox Inc, sought high court review after the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New York ruled for Aereo in April.
FilmOn X has been involved in litigation similar to that faced by Aereo. The company has appeals pending before the San Francisco-based 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit after losing in lower courts.
David Frederick, a lawyer for Aereo, said in an email the company would oppose the motion.
Except for the federal government, the Supreme Court rarely grants motions like the one filed by FilmOn X. If the request is denied, FilmOn X could still file a friend-of-the-court brief in the case.
If the court were to grant the request, it would likely mean Aereo would have less time for oral arguments before the Supreme Court's justices.
Aereo, backed by Barry Diller's IAC/InterActiveCorp , and FilmOn X, founded by Internet entrepreneur Alki David, use similar technology that allows viewers to watch network television on mobile devices. The images are captured via remote antennas. Users then receive the content via the Internet.
The case is ABC v. Aereo Inc, U.S. Supreme Court, No. 13-461.]]>
In an October 2013 filing, FilmOn described Aereo as a "substantially identical service," adding that, "The technological systems used by FilmOn X and Aereo 'are essentially the same.'"
Now, though, in order to make its voice heard as part of the Aereo Supreme Court case, FilmOn needs to prove it is different. The highest court of the land agreed in January to hear an appeal from broadcasters — including units ofWalt Disney Co., CBS Corp., NBCUniversal Media LLC, 21st Century Fox Inc. and Univision Communications Inc.— regarding a lower court's ruling that Aereo is operating legally.
FilmOn has now filed a motion to intervene in the Aereo case before the Supreme Court, arguing that while FilmOn has been enjoined from offering access to network content across most of the U.S., Aereo is not subject to the same injunctions. Moreover, FilmOn said Aereo, as the company's "primary competitor," has an incentive to leave the injunctions against FilmOn intact and therefore is not likely to adequately represent FilmOn's interests before the court.
But according to University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law professor James Grimmelmann, FilmOn is not likely to get its day in court before the justices — at least in connection to the Aereo case.
"Unless FilmOn could show that it is somehow differently situated in a way that the court will get the underlying legal issue wrong if it doesn't hear from them now, the court is uninterested in hearing from them," Grimmelmann told SNL Kagan. "And because FilmOn has been telling everybody that its system is technologically identical to Aereo's, it has nothing to add. Their entire defense for the last year has been based on the idea that they're indistinguishable from Aereo, so that makes them uninteresting from the court's point of view."
Grimmelmann acknowledged that FilmOn's future in the U.S. could certainly hinge on the Aereo ruling. "If FilmOn operates the way that it currently claims to, then the Supreme Court case will either shut it down or leave it a viable business," the law professor said. "One way or another, they are going to win or lose based on what Aereo does."
But that fact, he said, is not enough to make FilmOn interesting to the Supreme Court.
"Participation in the Supreme Court case is exclusively for those who will assist the court in deciding the case correctly," Grimmelmann said. "The Supreme Court is not a court of error correction. It doesn't exist to get each case right; it exists to get the law right so that other courts can apply it even handedly and fairly to other cases."
He also noted that for most Supreme Court cases, many people have a lot riding on the outcome.
"Millions of people would have been affected by the Supreme Court's decision on the individual mandate on the [Affordable Care Act]. The vast majority of them did not participate on that case, and if they'd asked to, they wouldn't have been allowed to once the Supreme Court took the case," Grimmelmann said. "The people who were arguing the case against the government were squarely affected by it, and they had very good lawyers who argued the case well. That's what the court is looking for."
FilmOn, however, is now making the case that it is quite different from Aereo in some very important ways.
FilmOn CEO Alki David explained in an interview with SNL Kagan that whereas Aereo simply retransmits content and offers a remote DVR service to subscribers, FilmOn creates and licenses programming, as well.
"We've aggregated so much content," the CEO said. "We license over 600 channels on our platform; we've licensed 45,000-plus video-on-demand titles; I've just acquired the world's biggest private film and TV collection to ingest and put on our platform as well. So we're a much different proposition to Aereo."
Another difference, David noted, is that FilmOn offers a free, ad-supported, standard-definition version of its service, whereas Aereo charges a monthly subscription fee. Also, FilmOn has a global footprint, while Aereo is focused on the U.S.
"The free-to-air television component in the U.S. for us is less than 3% of our overall revenues," David said. "So we have a very different strategy and a very different market to that of Aereo."
He continued: "That is why it is critical that we are heard. We've faced district court judges who are clearly in the pockets or on the side of broadcasters. In Washington, D.C., we were handed down a national restraining order. … Now, the Ninth Circuit has put our decision on hold until the Supreme Court hearing. So of course we have to be heard by the Supreme Court because we're so different to Aereo and our business is being so grossly damaged, not necessarily from a revenue point of view but from our ability to be a fully-fledged platform."
Grimmelmann, though, said FilmOn has not lost its court cases because of bad judges; rather, he blames bad litigation.
"Aereo has better lawyers. If you look at the quality of the briefings, the care they put into the arguments, the detail with which they make a response to an opposing argument — Aereo's filings have been very careful most of the time and they litigated well," he said. "It takes a little while to understand the rationale behind the cases that Aereo has been relying on. Aereo's lawyers have had the patience and skill to explain that really well. FilmOn's lawyers have been less successful in walking judges through that reasoning to the point that it makes sense."
Grimmelmann acknowledged, though, that FilmOn has been working from the point of a disadvantage.
"FilmOn came extremely close to being shut down completely before Aereo came along," he said. "Aereo started from a position of being squeaky clean, of having reputable investors, of being a company that didn't have all of these strikes against it; whereas FilmOn started from a hole in the ground, which has made courts look on it a lot more suspiciously."
Going forward, however, Grimmelmann does have some good news for FilmOn. Namely, he believes Aereo and therefore FilmOn have the law on their side. He is working on an amicus brief in the Aereo case that will likely endorse positions favorable to the startup.
"I'm on record as being not entirely positive about Aereo itself," Grimmelmann said. "But liking the company is different from thinking it should prevail on the law."]]>
FilmOn claims the service will help “independent broadcasters across the country flourish” by letting viewers connect to local free to air channels in Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco, Chicago, Seattle, Miami, Boston, Tampa, Denver, Atlanta, Dallas, Phoenix, Washington DC.
The service requires no additional hardware or software, and works by letting viewers who access the FilmOn website on their computer or mobile device to connect to hundreds of thousands of temporarily assigned mini desktop computers in thirteen cities across the USA, which are connected to antenna farms, enabling free access to local stations.
The launch comes in spite of an impending Supreme Court case, due to be held this year, challenging the legality of a similar online US TV streaming service, Aereo.
“I’m tired of the majors screwing you, screwing me, and screwing the entire industry, by trying to shut down progress. TV is facing the same crossroads that the music industry did in the Napster era — making the wrong decisions right now could be fatal,” said FilmOn founder and CEO Alki David.]]>
Users can now access remote desktops connected to FilmOn’s remote antenna and DVR system without any additional hardware or software. The experience, they say, is similar to watching a screen on a distant computer — but with TV quality definition. An individual can make a single non-public connection to a free public broadcast selected from hundreds of local free to air channels in Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco, Chicago, Seattle, Miami, Boston, Tampa, Denver, Atlanta, Dallas, Phoenix, Washington DC.
“I’m tired of the majors screwing you, screwing me, and screwing the entire industry, by trying to shut down progress,” says unabashedly bellicose FilmOn founder and CEO Alki David. “TV is facing the same crossroads that the music industry did in the Napster era — making the wrong decisions right now could be fatal. We won’t let the fat cats of broadcasting stifle technology and drive the independent stations out of business.”]]>
FilmOn founder and CEO Alki David has brought the fight for the public’s television rights to a new level with FilmOn’s new Teleport Technology. He suggests this technological innovation frees consumers to watch what they want, where they want, when they want it and helps independent broadcasters across the country flourish despite what FilmOn describes as the the efforts of the establishment to squeeze their profits out of existence.
The new technology allows users to access remote desktops connected to FilmOn’s remote antenna and DVR system without any additional hardware or software. The experience is described as similar to watching a screen on a distant computer — but with TV quality definition. An individual can make a single non-public connection to a free public broadcast selected from hundreds of local free to air channels in Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco, Chicago, Seattle, Miami, Boston, Tampa, Denver, Atlanta, Dallas, Phoenix, Washington DC.
According to FilmOn.com, this opens up new audiences and radically improves the economics for these independent broadcasters. By sticking up for consumers and independent broadcasters alike, FilmOn says it has has blown a hole in the major networks’ attempts to stifle technological progress with high-level nuisance suits and empty threats to pull programming. FilmOn.com says that “the people have spoken,” noting that they watched more than 1.2 billion video streams via the site.
“I’m tired of the majors screwing you, screwing me, and screwing the entire industry, by trying to shut down progress,” said David. “TV is facing the same crossroads that the music industry did in the Napster era – making the wrong decisions right now could be fatal. We won’t let the fat cats of broadcasting stifle technology and drive the independent stations out of business,” he averred.
Hundreds of thousands of mini desktop computers are already available in thirteen cities across the USA. Users can simply access the FilmOn website on their computer or mobile devices and connect to the temporarily-assigned desktops, which are connected to antenna farms, enabling users to access local TV channels for free. FilmOn.com suggests the user is essentially renting the use of the computer for a private viewing of the programming and that the remote Desktop Technology suddenly levels the playing field of distribution for Independent Broadcasters. According to David, “While the major networks NBC, CBS, Fox and ABC bully consumers by threatening to pull their channels from the public spectrum, the local broadcasters are empowered by this dynamic distribution,” he advised, adding that although not bound to do so, FilmOn would fully report to any broadcaster who seeks equitable revenue sharing.]]>
FilmOn, the controversial start-up from Greek billionaire Alki David, is raising the stakes in the battle over the future of television with a new service that lets viewers remotely watch local television broadcasts.
Through its “Teleport Technology”, a person in New York can watch local television broadcast in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago, Miami and Denver, among other US cities. The free service is launching in the US but could extend internationally.
The technology is likely to spark concern among traditional broadcasters such as ABC, CBS, Fox and NBC who are fighting the advance of television streaming services from the likes of FilmOn and its rival Aereo, which allow people to watch broadcast television without paying for traditional cable subscriptions.
At the heart of the battle is the threat to so-called retransmission fees that cable companies pay to carry broadcasters’ content.
For years, broadcasters offered their signals to cable, satellite and telecoms groups for free. In the past five years, however, broadcasters started demanding that distributors pay to retransmit their programming, creating a new revenue stream worth more than $2bn a year that could soar to $12bn, according to Rich Greenfield, a BTIG Research analyst. Those fees account for as much as a third of some broadcaster’s profits.
While only about 10 per cent of Americans rely on “rabbit ear” antennas for watching television, those retransmission fees could come under threat as more viewers cancel traditional pay-television subscriptions in favour of cheaper online streaming alternatives, such as Aereo and Netflix.
A Supreme Court battle now looms in the US over the legality of television services such as FilmOn and Aereo. Broadcasters are trying to shut down the services, claiming that they violate copyright by rebroadcasting signals without consent. FilmOn and Aereo claim instead that they have invented a new and more convenient form of rabbit ears that allow Americans to watch free-to-air television.
The new FilmOn teleport service allows consumers to watch the television shows they want to watch when and where they want to watch them at the same time that it is broadening the audience for independent broadcasters, said Mr David, the self-described “serial killer media entrepreneur” also behind the peer-to-peer streaming site BattleCam.com. FilmOn makes money by selling advertising as well as access to high-definition video and other services.
“It is not killing the media industry at all,” he said. “The media industry has ultimately killed itself.”
Aereo, the subscription-based television streaming company backed by Barry Diller’s IAC, has won a series of court battles and is due to argue its case before the Supreme Court this spring. FilmOn, which offers a similar service for free, has filed a motion to intervene in the case.
Unlike Aereo, court restrictions bar FilmOn from offering major network television through its service in most locations. Mr David said that those restrictions inspired the company to invent its latest offering. “Desperation is the mother of invention,” he said.
FilmOn now offers more than 350 live television channels as well as original programming globally and across devices. Last month, 20m FilmOn viewers watched more than 1.2bn video streams.]]>
BEVERLY HILLS, CA--(Marketwired - February 11, 2014) - FilmOn founder and CEO Alki David has brought the fight for the public's television rights to a new level with FilmOn's groundbreaking new Teleport Technology. This technological innovation frees consumers to watch what they want, where they want, when they want it and helps independent broadcasters across the country flourish despite the efforts of the establishment to squeeze their profits out of existence.
Users can now access remote desktops connected to FilmOn's remote antenna and DVR system without any additional hardware or software. The experience is similar to watching a screen on a distant computer -- but with TV quality definition. An individual can make a single non-public connection to a free public broadcast selected from hundreds of local free to air channels in Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco, Chicago, Seattle, Miami, Boston, Tampa, Denver, Atlanta, Dallas, Phoenix, Washington DC. This opens up new audiences and radically improves the economics for these independent broadcasters.
By sticking up for consumers and independent broadcasters alike, FilmOn has blown a hole in the major networks' attempts to stifle technological progress with high level nuisance suits and empty threats to pull programming. And the people have spoken. They came to FilmOn last month and watched more than 1.2 Billion video streams.
"I'm tired of the majors screwing you, screwing me, and screwing the entire industry, by trying to shut down progress," said David. "TV is facing the same crossroads that the music industry did in the Napster era -- making the wrong decisions right now could be fatal. We won't let the fat cats of broadcasting stifle technology and drive the independent stations out of business."
Hundreds of thousands of mini desktop computers are already available in thirteen cities across the USA. Users can simply access the FilmOn website on their computer or mobile devices and connect to the temporarily assigned desktops, which are connected to antenna farms, enabling Users to access local TV channels for free. The user is essentially renting the use of the computer for a private viewing of the programming.
FilmOn's remote Desktop Technology suddenly levels the playing field of distribution for Independent Broadcasters. Says David, "While the Major Networks NBC, CBS, Fox and ABC bully consumers by threatening to pull their channels from the public spectrum, the local broadcasters are empowered by this dynamic distribution."
Furthermore, "Though we are not bound to do so, FilmOn will fully report to any broadcaster who seeks equitable revenue sharing."
About FilmOn Networks:
Founded by Greek billionaire and media entrepreneur, Alki David, FilmOn is the world's number one free TV service and number one live TV app with more than 40 million downloads. FilmOn offers over 600 live TV channels including original programming, hundreds of video and audio podcasts from premium brands as well as over 45,000 video on demand titles at FilmOn.com and other destination sites online. Last month the site's 20 million users generated 1.2 billion video streams. The service is available globally via computers, smartphones, tablets as well as the FilmOn App for Windows 8 and iOS 7 and IP-enabled set-top boxes and devices.
With offices in Beverly Hills and London and data-centers in Los Angeles, London, and Geneva, FilmOn curates the best of free televised entertainment from around the globe. FilmOn TV is an Independent TV Broadcaster with stations in the UK (Sky Channel 292 and Freesat channel 410) and throughout the US. For more information please visit FilmOn.com and connect with us on Twitter and Facebook.
About Alki David:
FilmOn Founder and CEO, Alki David, is a serial Internet entrepreneur and shipping magnate. Born in Nigeria, raised in Greece, London and Switzerland, he is listed as the 45th richest man in the United Kingdom by the London Times Magazine's "Rich List."
For more information on FilmOn, or to request an interview with Alki David, contact:
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