Federal Court Bans Illegal Distribution of Chinese Television Programming on “TVpad” Devices; Sling TV Offers Affordable, Legal Alternative

  • Court ruling halts TVpad distribution
  • Fans of Chinese television encouraged to seek non-pirated sources of content
  • Sling TV offers special Chinese programming deal for former TVpad users
November 9, 2015
"The court took an important step to protect consumers from paying for a product that delivers content obtained illegally, and we are pleased by the response we’ve seen from ISPs who have complied with our enforcement efforts"

ENGLEWOOD, Colo.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--In the wake of federal court action and subsequent enforcement efforts to shut down the distribution of pirated content via the “TVpad” streaming device, Sling TV has announced a promotion to help connect U.S.-based fans of Chinese television with a legal, reliable source of popular programming.

Earlier this year, DISH Network L.L.C. (of which Sling TV is a subsidiary), China Central Television (CCTV), China International Communications Co., Ltd. (CICC), and TVB Holdings (USA), Inc. (TVB USA) filed a lawsuit against the manufacturers and distributors of the TVpad device for allegedly setting up a pirate broadcasting network designed to illegally stream CCTV and TVB channels using peer-to-peer technology.

As a result, the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California issued a preliminary injunction to halt the illegal distribution of CCTV and TVB content on TVpad. The preliminary injunction prohibits dealers from distributing, advertising, marketing or promoting TVpad devices that deliver CCTV’s or TVB’s copyrighted content. The injunction also prohibits Internet Service Providers (ISPs) from providing web, server, or file hosting services used to illegally distribute Chinese programming. ISPs have begun complying, terminating internet connections and thereby disrupting the TVpad device.

To help former TVpad users find an affordable, reliable and legal way to watch the Chinese shows they enjoy, Sling TV recently announced a new promotion for popular Chinese programming. Under the promotion, customers can get Sling’s “Great Wall” and “Jade” packages for one year, plus a Roku 2, for just $99. Sling TV brings consumers content from 30 popular Chinese channels, including TVBHD, TVB1, TVB2, TVBe, TVB Drama and top CCTV channels. The promotion is available at sling.com/tvpad1 (Chinese language) or sling.com/tvpad2 (English language).

“The court took an important step to protect consumers from paying for a product that delivers content obtained illegally, and we are pleased by the response we’ve seen from ISPs who have complied with our enforcement efforts,” said Chris Kuelling, senior vice president of International Programming for Sling TV. “Together with our programming partners, we will not stand for piracy, whether via TVpad or another device, and we want consumers to know they have a reliable, affordable and legal option through Sling TV to obtain the shows they want to see.”

“The injunction against TVpad is a major success in our efforts against pirates who distribute our television programs without authorization and for their own monetary gain,” said Samuel Tsang, vice president, Operations for TVB USA. “The public should not be misled. Operators of pirate boxes do not have copyright licenses from TVB to distribute TVB programs in the United States. Users may be paying hundreds of dollars for a pirate box and hundreds more to upgrade the hardware to continue using the device. We obtained an injunction against TVpad and we intend to take strong action against other pirate boxes as well. We will be relentless in our efforts to shut down devices that illegally distribute TVB programming.”

“Consumers expect to watch the content they purchased, but when that content comes from an illegal source, they end up ripped off, frustrated and missing the shows they enjoy,” said Chunguang Lu, President of CICC. “The court’s action will help prevent consumers from being exploited, while also protecting the copyrighted works of CCTV and other programmers.”

CCTV is the largest television broadcaster in mainland China, and TVB USA’s parent company, Television Broadcasts Limited (TVB), is the largest television broadcaster in Hong Kong. DISH holds certain rights to transmit CCTV and TVB television programming in the United States.

A copy of the preliminary injunction can be found here.

About Sling TV

Sling TV L.L.C., a subsidiary of DISH Network Corporation (NASDAQ: DISH), provides over-the-top television services including domestic and international live and Video-On-Demand programming. It is available on televisions, tablets, computers and smartphones. The Sling TV programming portfolio includes content from Disney/ESPN, HBO, AMC, A&E, Turner, Scripps, EPIX, Univision and Maker Studios. Sling Latino offers a suite of standalone and add-on Spanish-language programming packages tailored to English-dominant, bilingual and Spanish-dominant U.S. Hispanics. Sling International currently provides more than 200 channels in 18 languages across multiple devices to U.S. households. Sling TV is a next-generation service that meets the entertainment needs of today’s contemporary viewers. Visit www.Sling.com.

Follow @Sling on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/Sling #TakeBackTV

About DISH

DISH Network Corp. (NASDAQ: DISH), through its subsidiaries, provides approximately 13.932 million pay-TV subscribers, as of June 30, 2015, with the highest-quality programming and technology with the most choices at the best value. Subscribers enjoy a high definition line-up with more than 200 national HD channels, the most international channels, and award-winning HD and DVR technology. DISH Network Corporation is a Fortune 250 company. Visit www.dish.com.

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Follow @DISHNews on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/DISHNews

About China Central Television

China Central Television (CCTV) is the National Network of the People’s Republic of China and it is one of China’s most important news broadcast companies. Today, CCTV has become one of China’s most influential media outlets. Currently CCTV is distributing seven international channels in the U.S., which include Chinese, English and Spanish, covering almost every aspect of the Chinese social life. It is an important window for the world to find out more about China. CCTV is making efforts to become a global media network with increased international influence. Visit www.cctv.com.

About TVB USA

TVB USA’s parent company is Television Broadcasts Limited (TVB), the largest and most popular producer of Cantonese-language television programming in the world. TVB USA also offers various TVB channels in Mandarin, Vietnamese and English to meet the different needs of Chinese-speaking viewers in the U.S. All the best programming from TVB that originally aired in Hong Kong and Taiwan is broadcast by TVB USA in the United States on more than 10 different channels. Visit www.tvbusa.com.

Contact:

Sling TV L.L.C.
Karen Modlin, 303-723-1850