In a major break-through, sending a strong message to organised pirates of content in the digital space, certain members of Indian Broadcasting Foundation (IBF) have succeeded in their efforts to remove their channels from recently launched android and ios applications of ‘Chitram TV’ on Google and Apple play stores.
Chitram TV is an IPTV/OTT service provider which has been illegally broadcasting the signals of the Indian origin channels (MSM (Sony), Zee, Star, Viacom18 and certain other regional Indian television networks which are members of IBF) for quite some time. Recently Chitram TV launched its mobile application on android and ios devices in an attempt to widen its distribution and reach. The broadcasters took up the issue of Chitram’s illegal broadcast and Apple and Google have now removed these channels from their ios and Android platforms. This is a major victory for the members of IBF in their fight against online piracy.
These Indian broadcasters, who have joined hands to collectively fight digital piracy, are considering initiating legal proceedings against Chitram TV and other pirate platforms in multiple jurisdictions outside. None of the members of IBF (viz. MSM (Sony), Zee, Star and Viacom18) has authorised Chitram TV to carry their channels on any media platform let alone digital. IBF understands that Chitram TV continues to distribute the Indian channels via IPTV/OTT particularly outside India. IBF members have buckled up to fight the pirates like Chitram TV to preserve the integrity of their channels and content.
With the rapid advent of technology enabling the dissemination of content across digital platforms, there are enormous revenue opportunities for broadcasters and other content owners. The Indian channels which are available in more than 100 countries around the world are extremely popular amongst the South Asian diaspora. All of these channels have launched their own digital platforms and mobile apps but piracy has been a major stumbling block in revenue monetisation. Isolated efforts of the broadcasters could have achieved little. Now that the Indian broadcasters stand united in their fight against digital piracy, their efforts will provide a greater impetus in the global effort to combat digital piracy.