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Broadcasters To Sue Time Warner Over iPad App
Suit Just 'Days Away,' Insists Programming Exec
by Karl Bode 05:02PM Friday Mar 25 2011
Time Warner Cable recently launched their new iPad app, offering customers the ability to watch 30 channels on the iPad. While a promising start, the service arrived with a number of caveats -- including the fact it only works inside the home on Wi-Fi, and is restricted to only customers who have both Time Warner Cable TV service and broadband service. At the time, we noted that broadcasters were already complaining about the service, saying they never signed off on the distribution of their content in this fashion. Initially just rhetoric, an anonymous "programming executive" source tells Variety that legal action against Time Warner Cable is just "days away:"
quote:
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Time Warner Cable is facing litigation from at least one of Hollywood's majors in a matter of days over its iPad app that transmits live TV channels within a subscriber's home, according to a programming executive with knowledge of the situation. "I think it's just days away," said the source, who added that Time Warner Cable is no longer in discussions with programmers. "If we allow this without litigation, everyone will do it tomorrow. If we litigate, we have a chance to win."
There's a certain genius at work when you think you "win" by suing a company that is putting your content and ads in front of not only a broader audience, but people who are already paying a significant amount of money to view it. That's par for the course in terms of how the traditional TV industry is handling the evolution of video distribution (namely hysterically and often illogically).

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PToN
Premium
join:2001-10-04
Houston, TX

This is good....

Arent they the supporters of "Dont cut your cable for internet stream or we'll charge you extra on your already handicapped internet connection" road map...?

I wanna see how they react, this is not different than Hulu and up to a point Netflix...

Can they say hypocrite??
chsteiger
Premium
join:2003-10-03
Pasadena, TX

Greed!

If you pay to watch it, you should be able to do so on what ever device you want..
WernerSchutz

join:2009-08-04
Sugar Land, TX

Re: Greed!

NO ! In order to keep the spirit of fair and balanced initiatives against ebook piracy, customers should be charged extra if watching with two eyes instead of one. This is just to make sure that the cyclops, one eyed or maybe the blind might get a "reduced" rate.

(note: blinking two eyes alternatively at a high rate would be considered a DMCA violation)
gorehound

join:2009-06-19
Portland, ME
and this type of stuff is one of the reasons hollywood only sees maybe 20 - 75 bucks a year out of me.i used to spend thousands each year on entertainment.
now i buy a few boxsets of tv shows i support
all other stuff i buy used and physical.
i no longer go to the theater
MAFIAA gets very little out of me.
WernerSchutz

join:2009-08-04
Sugar Land, TX

YES !

The content industry should sue ANYONE that is trying to purchase, view or even think about their content. Only if NO ONE will be ever seeing their invaluable crap will it be protected to their hearts desire.

/sarcasm

Jim_in_VA

join:2004-07-11
Cobbs Creek, VA
kudos:4

Don't see them suing Sling Media ...

and the Slingbox, where you can view programming anywhere, anytime, on any device.
--
... need help? »evdo-tips.com/

jmn1207
Premium
join:2000-07-19
Ashburn, VA
kudos:1

Re: Don't see them suing Sling Media ...

said by Jim_in_VA:

and the Slingbox, where you can view programming anywhere, anytime, on any device.

Maybe Sling Media isn't big enough for them to go after...yet? Also, it sounds like this TWC app will allow someone to watch channels separate from what is being viewed over the TV/cable box.

With the Slingbox, you are only viewing what can actually be seen on a TV in your home. It's almost as if going after Sling Media would be like telling someone that they could not watch their program if they sat too far away from the TV. My viewing distance is practically unlimited now, but I am still just watching shows using my equipment and the channel package I subscribe to.

It seems that TWC is providing their customers with a new way to deliver TV content, and without permission from the content providers. I think it is silly, but I do see the difference.

Jim_in_VA

join:2004-07-11
Cobbs Creek, VA
kudos:4
Reviews:
·Metrocast Commun..

Re: Don't see them suing Sling Media ...

With the Slingbox you can view any channel you have in your package, including live local TV, and anything you have recorded on your DVR ... anywhere, on any device. That is far larger than what TWC offers. Now THAT is tv anywhere
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PSB

join:2002-11-22
Petaluma, CA
Sling Media is a subsidiary of Echostar.

FFH5
Premium
join:2002-03-03
Tavistock NJ
kudos:5
said by Jim_in_VA:

Don't see them suing Sling Media and the Slingbox, where you can view programming anywhere, anytime, on any device.

MLB is getting close to pulling the trigger on Slingbox:

»gizmodo.com/#!264609/mlb-calls-f···e-l-word
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PSB

join:2002-11-22
Petaluma, CA

Re: Don't see them suing Sling Media ...

Did you really just link to a 4 year old article as proof that they are "close to pulling the trigger"?

Selenia
Gentoo Convert
Premium
join:2006-09-22
Fort Smith, AR
kudos:2
Slingbox isn't offering a service perse. It's more like time/format shifting being done by the user after they receive the channels in their original form. Given how cases have gone regarding home taping and mp3s, it would be difficult to go after them. TWC is outright rebroadcasting the channels themselves, hence the liability. I don't agree with this shit, but that is how copyright law works.
PDXPLT

join:2003-12-04
Banks, OR

You have to remember what "hollywood" is ...

As an insider once explained to me, it consists of 2 parts. One part create some content. The other part is an army of lawyers and take-no-prisoners business types, whose jobs are to extract every piece of value (i.e., revenue) that they possibility can from that content. What you're seeing here is that second part in action; "maybe we can get paid an incremental fee because the viewer is holding the screen in their hand, rather than looking at one hanging on a wall".
Kearnstd
Space Elf
Premium
join:2002-01-22
Mullica Hill, NJ
kudos:1
Copyright law is built solely around screwing the consumer that is why it sucks.

*This Opinion relates to Copyrights in their current form and not the essence of Copyright which was a good thing until major corporations got their claws on it.
--
[65 Arcanist]Filan(High Elf) Zone: Broadband Reports

hootabius

join:2009-02-12

1 recommendation

What's the point?

I don't see what broadcasters are so upset about - You still need to pay for the cable service and be at home with your cable internet in order to use the app, so it really just acts as turning your iPad into another TV in the house. How are they losing money from this?

Though kudos to Time Warner for at least making some sort of effort to adapt its business model, even if it is somewhat pointless.

FFH5
Premium
join:2002-03-03
Tavistock NJ
kudos:5

TWC built-in restrictions SHOULD not be sue-able

Since the TWC setup for the iPad app makes users have both TWC TV & broadband access with TWC, all this is doing is allowing TV to be watched on a smaller device by those already paying to see it anyway. Hollyweird may sue but, just like with the remote server based DVR system Cablevision had set up, they will have a good chance of losing in court.
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banditws6
Shrinking Time and Distance
Premium
join:2001-08-18
Frisco, TX
Reviews:
·Time Warner Cable

Re: TWC built-in restrictions SHOULD not be sue-able

This is what I was thinking. Time Warner only lets you watch TV content via their iPad app if:

1. You are a Time Warner cable subscriber who already has access to the same content via your cable package
2. You are using it at home on your Time Warner Internet service

Given those restrictions, there is effectively no difference between this iPad app and another television in your house. I imagine that's why TWC figured they could release this app without any new licensing or permission from content rightsholders.
--
"I'll follow the law until it's just stupid." -Ted Nugent
Kearnstd
Space Elf
Premium
join:2002-01-22
Mullica Hill, NJ
kudos:1

Re: TWC built-in restrictions SHOULD not be sue-able

said by banditws6:

This is what I was thinking. Time Warner only lets you watch TV content via their iPad app if:

1. You are a Time Warner cable subscriber who already has access to the same content via your cable package
2. You are using it at home on your Time Warner Internet service

Given those restrictions, there is effectively no difference between this iPad app and another television in your house. I imagine that's why TWC figured they could release this app without any new licensing or permission from content rightsholders.

a Smart judge would toss the case and tell them openly that this is no different than a second TV in the house since the person has to have at a minimum a "Double Play" of TV and Internet from TWC.
--
[65 Arcanist]Filan(High Elf) Zone: Broadband Reports
PDXPLT

join:2003-12-04
Banks, OR
said by banditws6:

Given those restrictions, there is effectively no difference between this iPad app and another television in your house. I imagine that's why TWC figured they could release this app without any new licensing or permission from content rightsholders.

Yea, but that's not how "hollywood" thinks. As an insider once explained to me, it consists of 2 parts. One part create some content. The other part is an army of lawyers and take-no-prisoners business types, whose jobs are to extract every piece of value (i.e., revenue) that they possibility can from that content. What you're seeing here is that second part in action; "maybe we can get paid an incremental fee because the viewer is holding the screen in their hand, rather than looking at one hanging on a wall".
amungus
Premium
join:2004-11-26
America
Reviews:
·Cox HSI
·KCH Cable

Too late

I fail to see how this is much different from what can already be done with other methods/devices, such as, um, a Slingbox, or Media Center, or PlayOn...

OMG I can watch TV on my laptop... somebody call a lawyer

Jim_in_VA

join:2004-07-11
Cobbs Creek, VA
kudos:4

Re: Too late

+1

45612019

join:2004-02-05
New York, NY

How stupid

Hmm, a company finds a clever way to encourage some subscribers to keep their cable TV subscriptions and the beneficiaries from this arrangement decide to bite the hand that feeds them?

They've got some real geniuses over there in Hollywood.
b10010011
Whats a Posting tag?

join:2004-09-07
Bellingham, WA

I just don't understand why broadcasters and media "owners&

in general want to restrict access to their product.

One would think that getting as many eyes as possible on your product would be a good thing?

I would even think it would open up even more advertising sales opportunities.

David
I start new work on
Premium,VIP
join:2002-05-30
Granite City, IL
kudos:101
Reviews:
·DIRECTV
·AT&T Midwest
·magicjack.com
·Google Voice

This is kind of a thing I read about M$

They wanted the right to put into law or sue a company that uses vendors that use unlicensed software.

Actually come to think of it, it's on slashdot.

Personally myself, I would just be a good vendor and go for linux and open office... problem solved!
--
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mackey
Premium
join:2007-08-20
kudos:13

IPTV?

Throw this app on a cable box and voilà, instant IPTV deployment!

/mackey

torretntv

@verizon.net

torrent rss feeds got this beat by miles

consumers have already begun cutting the cord (as in unsubscrbing to cable-tv service).. this is too little too late.
Taget

join:2004-07-29

If you are paying for it and it's in your home...

...how are you not using the Ipad as a defacto set top box? The only difference is that it arrives to the tv viewing device inside your home via wifi rather than via a coax cable.
WhatNow
Premium
join:2009-05-06
Charlotte, NC
Reviews:
·Time Warner Cable

Write the companies that place the ads

If consumers start writing the companies placing the ads you may not be buying their product because you can't watch the programs their ads are placed on the content companies will get the message from the people that count. The ones paying the bill.
jkeelsnc

join:2008-08-22
Greensboro, NC

TWC

I am on TWC and generall happy with my internet. But if they start screwing around like ATT and it looks like they are getting ready to then I will just cancel my subscription. I know a lot of the stuff that is going on has to do with illegal downloads which I am not involved with. But for them to monitor this stuff costs them extra money and then they pass that expense on to the customer. Time to cut more than the TV cord perhaps. Maybe its time to go ahead and cut the internet cord too. The studios certainly have gotten greedy and I don't buy anything from them much anymore. I almost never even go to the theater anymore. They need to adapt to the new paradigm of internet video instead of fighting change. Its alright if they don't I just withdraw my spending and money from them.

SpottedCat

join:2004-06-27
Miami, FL

Ummm...

Ever get the feeling that broadcasters DON'T want people watching their channel?

And here I thought the broadcasting industry was all about getting as many viewers as possible. Am I wrong?

This just defies common sense and logic.

XPAMD
Premium
join:2002-06-08
united state

Re: Ummm...

said by SpottedCat:

Ever get the feeling that broadcasters DON'T want people watching their channel?

And here I thought the broadcasting industry was all about getting as many viewers as possible. Am I wrong?

This just defies common sense and logic.

That's cause we're dealing with a bunch a corporate yahoo's who get big fat bonuses and could careless about what we think, as long we paying for those big fat bonuses.

They don't have to worry about "cutting costs" because of these big fat bonuses. I don't get any big fat bonuses....no bonus at all. They can kiss my big fat......boneass.
Chuck_IV

join:2003-11-18
Connecticut

Mind Boggling...

What Time Warner did was make it EASIER for their customers to watch the broadcaster's programming. Instead, the broadcasters would rather sue to make it HARDER to or so potentially you will NOT watch their programming?

WTH???
tmc8080

join:2004-04-24
Brooklyn, NY
Reviews:
·ooma
·Optimum Online
·Verizon FiOS

hypocritical or crazy like a fox?

on the one hand time warner makes an "app" that can pirate it's own content (retransmission of licensed content for which they never obtained authorization to retraismit-- over wireless spectrum of an ipad or android device) and the other hand will report ip owner info to content providers...

lawyers are going to have a field day with time warner...
jkeelsnc

join:2008-08-22
Greensboro, NC

Money

Money is the most important thing in the world. These broadcasters all need to sue us for not buying whatever they dictate that we should want. They must make sure that they grown their revenue stream without much effort. Why should it require real work when they can sue people who don't subscribe to cable and make even more money? And as for those who still subscribe we will get some legislation passed that requires everyone to subscribe to everything available and broadcasters will set the rates. It is only fair because their fat bank accounts don't already have enough dollar signs and decimal points. Why are people so upset with this? It is unamerican to oppose this. Why can't everyone ban together to help the broadcasters instead of forcing them to resort to misery and subterfuge to extract money from unpatriotic and unamerican people who can't understand why this is so important? *sniff* *tears rolling down cheeks*