A company that makes it possible for users to stream television programs live online is fighting a copyright infringement lawsuit filed by the major U.S. broadcast networks. In a counterclaim filed late last week in Washington federal court, FilmOn X LLC argued the networks were violating the public trust by trying to block consumers' ability to watch free over-the-air broadcasts.
The ABC, CBS, Fox and NBC television networks, their local affiliates in the Washington metropolitan area, and several other national broadcasters sued FilmOn in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia in late May. The networks accused FilmOn of "exploiting…some of the most valuable intellectual property created in the United States" by distributing their programs without a license.
FilmOn, according to court filings, uses tiny antennae to capture television broadcast signals in local markets and stream the live programming online. In counterclaims filed June 27, FilmOn, represented by attorneys with Baker Marquart in Los Angeles, denied it was infringing the networks' copyrights.