Things looked bad for Locast before, and it got worse. A judge this week permanently banned streamer Locast from continuing its operations, a decision that follows a years-long legal standoff between major broadcasters and the shoddy streaming provider.
A permanent injunction signed by Judge Louis L. Stanton this week stated that Locast founder David Goodfriend and his nonprofit Sports Fans Coalition NY, which operates the Locast service, are “permanently barred from” the free TV to operate a streaming service.
The injunction follows a series of rapid developments that led to Locast’s apparent demise, after the four major broadcasters that had sued the company — ABC, CBS, Fox and NBC — won a legal victory in their battle against the streamer in early September. , after which Locast suspended his service.
The major broadcasters sued the live TV streamer in 2019 for copyright infringement by Locast’s company. Locast’s non-profit operations were based on a copyright exemption that allows the rebroadcast of their broadcasts by non-profit organizations. Locast technically didn’t charge its users anything to access its service, but it often asked them for monthly donations.
Earlier this month, a court sided with the big four by ruling that the fees Locast collected from these donations “exceeded the actual and reasonable costs of maintaining and operating the service,” a copyright exemption provision that according to the court Locast defied . Almost immediately, the service informed customers that it would suspend its services.
“As a non-profit organization, Locast has been designed from the very beginning to operate in accordance with the strict letter of the law, but in response to recent court rulings, with which we respectfully disagree, we hereby suspend our operations, effective immediately,” the company told customers in an email at the time.
The injunction specifically states that it does not preclude Goodfriend and his organization from requesting a suspension of the permanent ban, but also notes that it also does not prevent the broadcasters themselves from opposing the suspension. Company representatives did not immediately return a request for comment.