The Type of Establishment Matters in TV Piracy Cases

Posted on February 7, 2017 by Matthew Paré

The typical defendant in a TV signal piracy case is a small restaurant or bar.  However, the most common plaintiff, J & J Sports Productions, Inc. takes the position that any exhibition of a pay-per-view fight that is not in a residential dwelling unit is subject to a lawsuit.  There are many locations that fall outside your typical bar or restaurant scenario and are also not people’s homes, and this has given rise to an ambiguity in terms of whether the plaintiff has the rights to such exhibitions.  For example, locations such as schools, churches, clubs, and organizations of various kinds have been sued for allegedly committing TV signal piracy when showing a pay-per-view fight and paying the residential price instead of the commercial license fee. 

Recently attorney Matthew Pare successfully defended a non-commercial social club that was sued by J & J Sports Productions, Inc., namely the American Citizen Social Club in Arizona.  The plaintiff sued this social club even though it was not a for-profit business and therefore not a commercial exhibition.  In successfully arguing for the defense, attorney Matthew Pare directed the court’s attention to the details of the commercial license agreement that did not grant the plaintiff J & J Sports Productions, Inc. rights for this type of establishment.  The court agreed with the defense and granted the motion for summary judgment.  In other words, it was a complete victory for the defendants and the plaintiff got nothing. 

The moral of this story is that if you are being sued or are being threatened with a lawsuit for allegedly committing TV signal piracy, the nature of the location can be very significant.  If the location is not a commercial location but rather is a club or organization of some sort, it is likely that there is a complete defense.  The case that really established this is case number 4:15-cv-00178-JGZ in the District of Arizona.  It is yet another example of how attorney Matthew Pare has literally shaped the law in the field of TV signal piracy.  If you need legal representation to defend such a case Mr. Pare is the most qualified, experienced, and knowledgeable attorney for this situation.  He is available for a free initial consultation at 619-869-4999. 

TV Signal Piracy

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