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Omniverse Live Streaming TV Gets Struck by Lawsuit from Amazon and Netflix

By Bill Toulas / February 16, 2019

A group of indicters comprising of Netflix, Amazon, and ACE (Alliance for Creativity and Entertainment) which counts several major Hollywood studios as its members, has sued Omniverse for copyright infringement. Omniverse is a live TV streaming service that partners with IPTV providers to deliver content to set-top box devices such as Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, Chromecast, ROKU, and more. According to the lawsuit that was submitted to a Federal court in California, Omniverse and it’s owner Jason DeMeo stream copyrighted movies and TV shows without authorization.

Out of the 80 channels offered by Omniverse, several seem to be streaming without a valid license, but this allegation has been previously denied by DeMeo. As he has pointed out, Omniverse has received cease and desist notices in the past, yet everything was resolved before taking things on the court only by showing the licensing contracts. However, he has chosen not to disclose the details in these contracts yet, on grounds of market competition. The plaintiffs are clearly not convinced by those statements, as they claim certainty about the illegal nature of Omniverse’s services.

What the group asks the court for is an injunction to shut down all of the defendant's services, and to confiscate the associated hardware. The statutory damages were set at a maximum of $150k per work infringed, so the penalty can easily reach millions, depending on the defendant’s knowledge, contribution to infringement, and other key factors. As the lawsuit details: “Defendants operate at a higher level in the supply chain of infringing content—recruiting numerous downstream services like Dragon Box into the illicit market and providing them with access to unauthorized streams of copyrighted content. Defendants function as a ‘hub’ of sorts, with the enlisted downstream services as the ‘spokes.’ Omniverse’s offering is illegal, it is growing, and it undermines the legitimate market for licensed services.”

It is obvious that the rise of IPTV services is increasingly troubling the legitimate market players, while shady contracts and half-finished agreements cannot keep their parties hidden for long. IPTV is a great way to deliver content to the masses, and the freedom that underpins it has naturally led to illegal streaming that brings quick money in for the stakeholders. Maybe it’s time to level the playing field and lay a fair competition ground for cable and non-cable services alike. Whatever the case, the court will decide on Omniverse’s contract legitimacy.

Are you using any kind of IPTV services? Are you confident that you are getting your content in a legal context? Let us know where you stand in the comments section below, and don’t forget that you can always share your thoughts on our socials as well, on Facebook and Twitter.



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