The case started when broadcasters took legal action against Locast in July 2019, over a year after the local channel streaming service launched. ABC, CBS, Fox, and NBC sued to shut the service down. Locast responded, saying that it “provides a public service retransmitting free over-the-air broadcasts. Its activities are expressly permitted under the Copyright Act.”
Locast continued to use its “free” status to maintain that the service is allowed to operate a secondary transmission service, U.S. District Court Judge Louis Stanton wrote that income from the $5 donations required for uninterrupted viewing was used for expanding the service, which isn’t permitted under an exemption to the Copyright Act.
The case is now ending with Locast being shut down for good and paying out $32 million in copyright damages to ABC, CBS, Fox and NBC, according to a report from The Hollywood Reporter.