Broadcasters Win Fight To Ban Global Mode For Streaming Services Including Netflix

Publish Date
Wednesday, 24 June 2015, 6:04PM

New Zealand internet service providers offering customers "back door" access to streaming web content will stop offering those services from September in a deal cut with broadcasters who were taking them to court.

Pay-TV operator Sky Network Television today said it has dropped legal proceedings against the ISPs after reaching a settlement, which will see the 'global mode' unavailable in New Zealand from September 1.

Sky teamed up with Television New Zealand, Media Works TV and Lightbox, Spark New Zealand's online streaming service, to take the action against Bypass Network Services, CallPlus Services, Orcon and Flip Services over the service, claiming it breached copyright obligations and the Fair Trading Act.

GlobalMode was developed by Auckland firm Bypass and is provided free by CallPlus. It's used by tens of thousands of its customers to access services that are supposed to be blocked in New Zealand for copyright reasons.

These include the United States version of popular streaming television service Netflix.

Online streaming video has become increasingly competitive as traditional broadcasters and telecommunications companies alike have seen it as an avenue to replace some of their shrinking revenue streams.

While the broadcasters were adamantly opposed to the 'global mode' service, they've been less stringent in their opposition to virtual private networks (VPNs), another way consumers can get around regional blocks.

Broadband users can still circumvent blocks on overseas television services by using overseas intermediaries, such as UnoTelly and Unblock-US, that charge about $5 a month to disguise the location of customers' computers.

NZ Herald

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