Univision has won this round against Televisa in the ongoing battle between two Hispanic media entities arguing over on who holds the U.S. rights to online streaming of Televisa-produced shows. Los Angeles Federal Court Judge Philip Gutierrez issued a ruling yesterday prohibiting Televisa webcasting the shows which it has already licensed to Univision.
Mexicos largest media company, Grupo Televisa, has been supplying the very popular telenovelas to U.S. based Unvision since 1992, and the two have fought over the exclusive rights to audiences in U.S. as new distribution technologies (including satellite) came in. And now, after a royalties settlement the two companies reached in Jan this year, the argument has moved over to the online side. Univision contended that the original agreement cover rights to online rebroadcast of the full shows, while Televisa argued that it did not.
After this ruling, Univision said it is now looking at legal options to start webcasting the telenovelas through its website Univision.com. Televisa said it is planning to appeal. “It’s a mistake for Univision to characterize this decision as a victory; it simply maintains the status quo,” the statement to Variety said. “The only winners of this decision will be the Internet sites that transmit Televisa content illegally,” it added.
By Rafat Ali