The best things in life are free, and what better a way to spend an evening than in a bar watching the new Game Of Thrones? Watching the blockbuster fantasy show in a drinking establishment surrounded by strangers is becoming a sort of cultural phenomenon in the US, with bars offering themed nights for the showings and all sorts of other amenities.
However, HBO are not happy about heir show being broadcast in public. For one thing, their subscriber agreement absolutely says no broadcasting the show to an audience – personal use only. Plus, the show being screened in a bar as a planned out event is technically using their content to promote someone else’s business.
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It’s a fair grievance, the complaints are all valid and lawful. However, some say that the fact HBO sent one bar a legal ‘cease and desist’ notice for showing the latest episode to be somewhat heavy handed. Videology, a bar in Brooklyn, received some angry correspondence from the network saying that they could no longer have their Game Of Thrones themed night showing the episode.
It’s strange, because of late HBO and Time Warner have both been wont to speak well of internet piracy of their show as ‘healthy competition’ in the media market – saying that the promotional value of everyone getting the show for free was well worth the lost revenue. However, HBO doesn’t the show being essentially used to help beer sales at single locations. Odd.
“As a pay subscription service, HBO should not be made available in public establishments. When it does happen, it is of particular concern when there is an attempt to profit off the programming.” Said the network in response to queries about why they had sent the cease and desist notice to the bar. This is nothing new as we have taken such actions for well over a decade.”
Regardless of whether it’s mean or not HBO has the right to do this kind of thing – it’s not very cool for your local bar to have to come face to face with a big scary TV network, so if your favorite watering hole shows the show, perhaps consider keeping it to yourself.
Via: Business Insider