A Pasadena, California, district court ruling that FilmOn X, LLC, was a “cable system” and thus eligible for compulsory licenses under the Copyright Act has been reversed by the U.S. Court of Appeals in San Francisco. In a ruling in favor of broadcasters such as Fox Television Stations, Inc., the court held that, based on guidance from the Copyright Office, a service that captures copyrighted works broadcast over the air, and then retransmits them to paying subscribers over the Internet without the consent of the copyright holders, is not a “cable system” eligible for a compulsory license. Therefore, streaming television service provider FilmOn X, LLC, was not entitled to a compulsory license under Section 111 of the Copyright Act (Fox Television Stations, Inc. v. AereoKiller, LLC, March 21, 2017, O’Scannlain, D.).
A full summary of this case has been published on Kluwer IP Law
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