By John Eggerton, Broadcasting & Cable Online, 3-17-17

To be or not to be defined as an MVPD, that is the question.

A federal appeals court Friday heard argument in the long-running court battle between TV station content providers and FilmOn X, and, according to an attorney at the lively and lengthy oral argument, bothsides had their adherents.

FilmOn X says it is the online equivalent of a cable system/MVPD and should be eligible for a blanket compulsory copyright license to stream TV content. Fox and the other Big Four TV networks – with the support of the National Association of Broadcasters – have said FilmOn X is not entitled to the license and cannot stream TV content without individually negotiating for the rights.

Hearing the case, Fox Television Stations, Inc. v. FilmOn.TV Networks Inc., was a three-judge panel of the court comprising Chief Judge Merrick Garland and judges Brett Kavanaugh and Patricia Ann Millett.

According to Cory Andrews, senior litigation counsel with the Washington Legal Foundation who was at the argument (WLF filed an amicus brief supporting Fox et al.), the argument went long – almost two hours – and included some lively questioning.  » Read More