FilmOn Can't Use Compulsory Copyright License, Judge Says

Law360, New York (November 12, 2015, 6:17 PM EST) -- A D.C. federal judge sided with television networks Thursday and ruled that streaming services like FilmOn X don't qualify for a compulsory license to stream copyrighted content — a decision that directly conflicts with a California federal judge's decision on the same question.

In a sealed ruling, U.S. District Judge Rosemary M. Collyer said that FilmOn X LLC, an online streaming service similar to the shuttered Aereo Inc., cannot use the Copyright Act's Section 111 license, which gives cable companies like Comcast Corp. automatic access to the broadcasters' content.

In the past, Web-based television services have generally been considered ineligible for...

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