Disney v. VidAngel: Round 1

Hi VidAngel customers,

 

We have a new pen-pal. Last month, four studios sent a letter saying:

“Dear VidAngel, you are violating our copyrights. Please stop.
Love, Disney, Warner Brothers, Twentieth Century Fox, and Lucasfilm”

 

So this week we responded:

“Dear studios, no we are not. Also, you’re violating antitrust laws.
Yours truly, VidAngel”

 

Okay, that’s not word-for-word. But basically, Hollywood said, “Cut it out.” We said, “That’s literally all we do.” (Eh?) And now we’re planning a trip to California to meet our pen-pals in person.

But you want details. Many of you have been asking for a thorough explanation of VidAngel’s legal case. So we’ve organized some of the key arguments below, using quotes from the studios’ complaint and VidAngel’s counter-complaint. Enjoy.

 

Issue I: Payment to copyright holders

The Studios say…

“VidAngel charges users for watching [the studios’] content but has no authorization and pays nothing for the rights it exploits.

“…[B]y cutting out payments to copyright owners, VidAngel is able to offer prices that undercut licensed services…”

But VidAngel says…

“In fact, the opposite is true. VidAngel spends over one-third of its gross revenues to lawfully purchase thousands of DVD and Blu-ray discs, which are then re-sold to VidAngel users. Shown below is the manager of VidAngel’s storage vault pictured with lawfully purchased copies of The Revenant.

 

Leo was lonely in that movie, so we bought him, like, a thousand more Leos

Leo was lonely in that movie, so we bought him like a thousand more Leos. (The Revenant is one of VidAngel’s more than 2,000 titles.)

 

“The majority of VidAngel’s purchases represent sales that would not occur but for its filtering service, because most of VidAngel’s customers would not acquire and watch a particular film without filtering.

“…[The studios] in truth receive the same payment for each of these first sales to VidAngel as they would receive from any [other] lawful first purchaser of their title.”

In other words, VidAngel lawfully reimburses the studios by buying thousands of their discs. The studios’ complaint did not acknowledge this fact.

 

Issue II: Studio permission

The Studios say…

“VidAngel does not have permission to copy Plaintiffs’ movies and television shows or to stream them to VidAngel’s users…

“By running this service without a license, VidAngel blatantly violates the Copyright Act and confers on itself unfair and unlawful advantages vis-à-vis licensed services in the VOD marketplace.”

But VidAngel says…

“[The studios] repeatedly suggest that VidAngel needs their permission to offer a filtering service, despite Congressional law which expressly authorizes VidAngel’s service without need for any such consent.

“[The Family Movie Act] provides that ‘making imperceptible (i.e., filtering)… of limited portions of audio or video… transmitted [e.g., streamed] to [a] household for private viewing, from an authorized copy of the motion picture’ does not violate the Copyright Act.

“…In asking this Court to impose a consent requirement on VidAngel’s filtering service, Plaintiffs are effectively asking that the Court repeal a federal statute enacted to protect American families.”

Meaning, VidAngel does not require a license to filter a movie that customers have already lawfully purchased. That right is protected by the Family Movie Act.

 

Issue III: Uploading DVDs and Blu-rays

The Studios say…

“VidAngel appears to circumvent the technological protection measures on DVDs and Blu-ray discs to create unauthorized copies and then uses those copies to stream Plaintiffs’ works to the public without authorization.

“…VidAngel’s circumvention of the [technological protection measures] violates Section 1201 of the [Digital Millennium Copyright Act].”

But VidAngel says…

“In enacting the Family Movie Act… Congress protected the right of families to filter and view content… in Copyright Act Section 110…

“That section provides that [filtering a streamed motion picture, as described above] does not violate the Copyright Act. Because the Digital Millennium Copyright Act is part of the Copyright Act, it is subject to the same exemption.”

“…[The studios] contend that the mere act of creating a decrypted version of a lawfully purchased DVD of their title violates… the Digital Millennium Copyright Act.

“VidAngel contends that the making of a decrypted copy as the necessary first step in making a lawfully purchased DVD capable of being filtered is fully consistent with the [Family Movie Act] and otherwise complies with all copyright laws.”

In other words, VidAngel argues that decrypting DVDs is a necessary step in allowing viewers’ movies to be filtered, and is covered under the Family Movie Act.

 

Anyway, you know how pen-pals are. Sometimes you have different opinions about whether your business and livelihood should be permanently shuttered by a court-ordered injunction. LOL! Pen-pals!

Stay tuned for further updates, including a future blog post about our antitrust counter-claim. And thank you, VidAngel fans, for your support throughout this process. It means a lot.

 

Thanks a million,

VidAngel

#SaveFiltering

 

You can read the rest of our counterclaim here.

VidDavid vs. Gollywood . It's like the Bible story, except this time the giant is the Jewish one.

VidDavid vs. Gollywood 

119 thoughts on “Disney v. VidAngel: Round 1

  1. You folks know how I feel about you and your service. You have made it possible for my family to enjoy new and older movies that I was forced to skip because of the graphic violence, lewd content and vulgar language. For example. I had always wanted to see the Postman, but refrained because I do not appreciate the bad language, graphic violence and I don’t know what else made that movie get an R rating. I was positively thrilled to see it listed on VidAngel. We enjoyed the filtered version and I really liked the movie, as we saw it on VidAngel. I know I would not have watched it, had it not been for VidAngel. We used to be able to watch such movies after they had been filtered for broadcast television but now, they allow anything on broadcast television too. I don’t know how many movies I have been able to enjoy thanks to VidAngel that I would never have seen before. Until Hollywood puts decent movies out, I will be watching their movies filtered by VidAngel or NOT AT ALL. I hope that is clear enough for those studio heads who see the world through smut colored glasses.

    1. I completely agree! IF I cannot watch them on VidAngel with the junk filtered out I will not be watching them at all.

      Which mean less money for Hollywood.

      This whole lawsuit is unbelievable and a true representation of greed, pure and simple.

      Well, most of us who use this service will not be purchasing these movies outside of VIdAngel.

      So, it is not going to line their pockets to get rid of something as wonderful as VidAngel.

  2. Praying for VidAngel and its members. If I can’t choose to enjoy a movie without garbage, I will simply choose not to enjoy the movie, and the studios will get nothing from me at all.

    1. I think the trouble is, the studios are already gettw nothing from you at all. Because we can sell back the movie for only a dollar less than we bought it, each DVD purchased by vidangel can reach hundreds to thousands of households with the producers only being paid once. I support guidance but let’s do this right. Even if we have to pay more.

      1. I agree! VidAngel’s disingenuousness is disappointing. They manage to stream movies nobody else is allowed to, and they charge much less to do so. The sellback loophole is cute, but shouldn’t fool anybody.

        I hope they go back to the Chrome extension to filter on YouTube.

      2. There’s no trouble in this at all. Anyone is allowed to resell movies they own and the studios get nothing for it. Vidangel is just providing a platform for us to sell movies we don’t want anymore. They also provide editing software that we’re legally allowed to use on movies we own. That was determined legal years ago.

  3. We love your service! Our family can finally watch movies together.❤️
    Please keep fighting! Don’t let these
    money-grubbing studios win!!

  4. I wish you all the luck in the world. The ramifications of this case are huge. If vidangel is deemed illegal then so is a Personal Plex Server or other private movie streaming server. Do your best, I know you will.

  5. I hope Vidangel wins because it will change the movie industry for good and it will be way more consumer friendly.

  6. I think we need to start a # campaign with a slogan such as #Why does Disney want to keep the filth?”

    I would not have purchased the movies I did, because I want the entertainment not the bad words, butts or bosoms!

  7. I bought a shirt, and can’t wait for it to arrive! I know you guys have a tough battle, but it is for a good cause. I would even be willing to testify that I wouldn’t have paid to watch any of these movies if I could not filter out things I don’t want my family to hear/see.

  8. I was under the impression that the studios don’t really care about the filtering aspect of the service, only about the streaming part. Their argument is that a lot of people watch movies on VidAngel not because the movie needs filtering, but because the movie is only $1 (basically RedBox online). Before you discreetly removed the ability to filter the credits, people were watching movies essentially unfiltered just by “filtering” the opening and/or closing credits. In that way, you had a massive competitive advantage – I could watch Star Wars 7 on VidAngel (only filtering one small thing) for $1 before any other video streaming service had it available. If you guys are allowed to rip, stream, and resell DVDs, the other streaming services will want to do it too – it’s only fair.

    1. I personally don’t care that its $1 (its nice, but I’d rather pay more than lose this incredible service). If it was $3.99 like amazon I’d still prefer to use VidAngel.

  9. Ditto all the above! Thanks for the awesome service and the ability to get rid of the trash so we can enjoy movies more! I bet you’ve been prepared for this since the beginning. You knew Goliath was going to cause trouble!

  10. Yes I would gladly testify that I would never have watched many of these movies with out the filters! Vidangel!!

  11. Thank you for making it possible to watch so many movies I would otherwise skip. If these studios want more money, stop inserting irrelevant nudity, bad language and graphic violence into everything! This service allows them more revenue from a segment that increasingly has other options. How sad that they don’t realize it.

  12. Your service is a staple in our home. It allows us to choose what we want to skip and what we want to see. It allows even my 6 year old to enjoy some of the movies with my older kids that there is no way he would have been otherwise. That allows us to watch more films as a complete family instead of making him watch a movie by himself in the other room because it has too many intense or violent parts. I too will pray for this company to stay. Otherwise many of these studios will lose me as a customer too.

  13. We love vid angel! Our family have watched some really great movies that we otherwise would never have got to see because of content, language, and nudity. Thank you for your service. Keep up the fight!

  14. I took some time to read the complaint and countercomplaint, and I understand a little more where the studios are coming from. They are afraid that your business model will undercut other major streaming services, by offering titles earlier than they would have been released otherwise. But I say let the free market dictate how and where one may purchase content, and whoever can deliver the content to me in the least expensive manner with the best end user experience, that’s where my money goes. I hated Hulu’s platform, and my money went elsewhere. I enjoy Netflix’s selection and variety of content, they get my money. Let’s be honest, I know exactly where to find bootlegged content, but I choose to honor the artists who created the content by legally purchasing access to it, as a matter of principle. Why should Disney or Fox have a problem with me wanting to legally pay for their media, and consume it however the *bleep* I want in my home with my family? The big studios are afraid that VidAngel has stumbled upon a market disrupting business model that takes market share away from big streaming services and their way-too-lucrative deals with those studios.

  15. I love the VidAngel service! As a Catholic, it allows me to watch great movies which I would not have watched without the filters. For example, I recently watched the amazing movie, The Lone Survivor. With VidAngel, I was able to turn off Graphic Violence and Bad Language. I look forward to watching other movies using the VidAngel service in the future.

  16. These studios are being asinine. Most of your users would never watch a majority of their movies without this service. They are actually making more money than if you did not exist! So, why on earth would any business want to lose money for the sake of forcing customers to watch inappropriate material? I have my own ideas, but we won’t go there. Regardless, thank you so very much for providing this to the public, and for fighting for the right to view media without the garbage!

  17. VidAngel

    Yes, I do follow your legal logic, and although you do have a valid legal case with some strong arguments, it does have several weak points that the studios can certainly try to exploit and it would not be unreasonable for a judge to latch on to.

    You claim that people purchase the videos and that you simply facilitate the purchase of said videos and then facilitate the buy back. You are also a company that facilitates the viewing for the purchased videos (through a “stream”). Finally, you also provide a “service” for facilitating access to community created filters.

    Here are your weak points of your argument. You may claim that each and every individual part of the business is legal and fair, and it probably is. However, it is very likely that the court will not only look at that, but also look at the company as a whole and attempt to define what it does. In simple man’s terms, “if it walks like a duck, it quacks like a duck, and smells like a duck, it’s probably a duck”. Right now you LOOK like a streaming and content filtering business. Streaming in the sense of providing one copy of content to several users. Content filtering in the sense that only you manage (not create) the filters.

    My humble suggestion, to strengthen your case, is to not only argue that the parts of the business are legal, but that the business strives to differentiate itself (even in appearance) from a streaming service.
    For example, you may create a unique identifier for each copy of each movie. That way when you “stream” the movie to the owner, you can show the owner (and keep for your records) that a specific copy of the content is being viewed by the owner. So in other words, I as a user can only buy, view and sell my “copy” of the content. Why? Because this would differentiate you from other streaming services that show “one unique copy of content to many viewers”.
    Another example would be to open source the raw content filtering database. In other words, the community created the filter, and the filter is openly available to the community. What you then would provide (to keep your business edge) would be ease of access (UI, integration) to the filtering content via your app and or uniquely designed UI.

    Anyway, these are just simple suggestions to strengthen the case. Don’t only argue that the parts of the business are legal, make it look like the business as a whole LOOKS different than other streaming businesses and you have a much stronger case.

    Sincerely,
    someone interested in your legal battle (I’m not even a customer)

    1. I think they do use a UID, as just the other night I went to watch an episode of Game of Thrones (which i NEVER would watch if unfiltered) and the SD version wasn’t available, so i rented the HD version ($2)…when I sold my HD version back, i noticed that the SD version was then available…so my assumption is that too many people had boughten the SD version (hence i couldn’t)…I don’t think showing user the UID would be of benefit, but i’m thinking they are tracking these DVD.

    2. Great analysis and comment. Everyone (including VidAngel) knew all along that VidAngel would get sued by the studios when VidAngel got big enough to make a blip on the studios’ radar. As one wanting VidAngel to succeed I’ve been afraid of the duck argument you make. It’s not the filtering that the studios are going after. VidAngel looks like a de facto VOD service but one that doesn’t pay for streaming rights in the traditional manner. I think it’s a tough case for VidAngel to make but I wish them much success.

  18. So the Studio really is making this a court issue because they want their filth to flow to the market. Here is an example of how the Studio just benefited from VidAngel purchase of Deadpool. I love Marvel movies and I would NEVER have watched this movie if it hadn’t been for the filtering I was able to setup. I proudly support VidAngel.

    1. To piggy back off that topic. Deadpool was such a smash hit in the boxoffice, it is having Disney question whether the R rated super hero movie is an untapped market. They are already discussing whether the final Wolverine should be R, and introducing more sex and graphic violence into what was once a traditional family business model. VidAngel allows the massive portion of their fan base to continue to enjoy those movies, while allowing the studios to continue to explore these new markets. So VidAngel will be even more important and an even bigger asset as movies get worse. I also refused to watch deadpool in theaters. I ONLY watched it because of VidAngel.

  19. Hi,
    I love Vidangel! I hope that you all win the case against you. The weakness in the Vidangel case is that you are buying hardcopies of the DVDs and then distributing that movie to the customer via the web. That in my mind is the weak link. It reminds me of the case recently where a particular service would stream over-the-air TV broadcasts to their customers. In that case, the service had a separate antenna for each customer at their facility, and they streamed the network broadcasts to their clients. But the courts still said that this company did not have the distribution rights to do this.

    Be strong guys!

  20. vidangel is incredible!!!! It is so nice to watch the movies and shows that are loved by so many without all the useless scenes and phrases that are added in purely to push audiences well past uncomfortable. when I watch a film or show it is because I enjoy the emotional response I have to the world these writers and actors create. I do not enjoy watching\hearing things that sever me from that reality by causing a sick feeling that urges me to stop watching and never watch again. I think the writers\actors\ corparations should take more pride in their work and be thankful that their audience is expanding. Swearing, nudity, and mutilation are not what makes good films. It is the talent and artistry that take you into a world you want to return to again and again.

  21. There is a movie that I saw several times in theatres. I bought it on VHS and later on DVD. I recently paid to stream it on Vidangel. It was nice to actually watch this movie without all of the unnecessary profanity.

    The studios aren’t losing any money with Vidangel. On the contrary, I’ve now watched movies on Vidangel that I otherwise wouldn’t have seen in theatres, bought, rented or streamed.

    Thanks and best of luck!

  22. Hang in there! I am so tired of these companies getting upset over people trying to make their stuff watchable by families who care about what their kids watch. You guys offer a great service! If the companies were smart they would buy you guys and let you keep doing it so they could make money. There is a market here. Why can’t they see that and do what is right?!?!?

  23. I, like many others, would have never purchased some of the content I have viewed on VidAngel had it not been for the filtering service. Thank you for providing this service!!

  24. We love vidangel!! We would not watch some of the R and PG-13 movies if it wasn’t for the filtering. Praying for a good outcome to keep vidangel going!

  25. Since you give us the ability to block bad scenes and language, than doesn’t that mean that Disney, Warner Brothers, Twentieth Century Fox, and Lucasfilm are all kind of fighting for evil? (Being kind of funny…) 😀 Keep up the awesomeness!

  26. I have never watched an R rated movie in the 38 years I have been alive and I stopped watching PG-13s years ago. Now that VidAngel has come around, I am watching cleaned up versions of movies I would never have otherwise seen. Thank you VidAngel!!!!!
    Please setup a Go Fund Me page or something like that so I can make a financial contribution!

  27. I am a loyal customer, love what you do! My family and I do NOT watch any unfiltered rated R movies… but I do watch them when they are filtered… there are so many movies I have watched on here that I wouldn’t have if it weren’t for vidangel! I really don’t understand what “the studios” have an issue with we are watching the movies they want us to watch, but we wouldn’t have watched them if it weren’t for vidangel! I don’t understand why they aren’t wanting us to watch them filtered… I am thankful for you vidangel, love what you do and I can’t wait for my new shirt to come in so I can wear it and share it on social media!! Thanks!

  28. I certainly hope you prevail. Having gratuitous objectionable content has curtailed my family seeing what otherwise could be thought provoking cinema. Good luck.

  29. This service has been the best thing for my family, and the movie industry. My family and I have watched movies that we WOULD HAVE NEVER WATCHED unfiltered. This means more money for Hollywood because they are expanding their market base.

  30. How can we make this go viral??? Once the people get behind it the studios will be forced to back down (vis a vis the LA Clippers former owner, Firefox former CEO, etc.)

    1. That was what I was thinking too:) I just posted this blog on fb, not sure how else to get out the word to a large amount of people.

  31. I read the entire complaint and counter-complaint. Great job from the VidAngel attorneys. I would definitely not have watched over 90% of the close to 100 movies I have purchased from VidAngel if not for the filtering service they provide. In my opinion VidAngel is no different than RedBox but VidAngel offers a filtering service when you get the movie from them. RedBox charges you $25 per movie if you don’t return it to them. VidAngel charges you $20 upfront and lets you keep it or you can sell it back for an amount credited back to you minus $1 or $2 per day that you kept the video. I don’t see how the movie companies even have a case at all. Their case should be thrown out of court or they should sue RedBox as well. For that matter, why don’t the movie companies sue traditional video stores who buy copies of the DVD’s and rent them out to customers? In my opinion, VidAngel does the same thing that RedBox and video stores do except with filters.

  32. I think it’s all new ground legally, which will make it so that you actually have to go to court and through judgement, set new precedent in order to stay afloat unaltered. It’s no easy battle, by any means.

    A couple potential issues I see are when you have a new release, are you pre-buying a predetermined amount of DVDs and have them in your possession prior to offering that movie? And what if demand on that first day overrides the number of copies you bought, including those that you can resell from copies sold back? Have you ever had to temporarily make a stream unavailable because there was no current hard copies available? I imagine you are going to show documentation of every transaction corresponding to an actual hard copy in existence that is not currently being used by any other user. If you have that, more power to you. If there was ever a time you preemptively offered streams for copies that would assumably be sold back, even in the coming hours, I think they have you.

    Related to this point is the decryption. I have to assume you are not decrypting every copy you have of the Revenant (the computer and man-power would be insurmountable) for viewing by unique users. I think this is another potential problem they will hit hard. Really, there’s an initial decryption taking place and put in your database which is then used for all the streams. There is no loss of quality with subsequent buy-backs like there might be if you purchased used hard copies. As I said, this is all untouched in the current law as far as I know, so it will be interesting to see if this goes to court.

    For what it’s worth, you guys have done this “service” better than anyone, from a legal standpoint and I have a feeling you have tried to protect yourselves from day one about probable future lawsuits. If your method of providing edited pictures is unacceptable, I’m pretty convinced there is no better method, legally, and it just won’t be a reality going forward. If it were me and those studios were willing to cut a deal by either sharing profits or restricting new releases by a few months on your service, than I’d take them up on it, but if you have the manpower to go through court, I think it would make for some interesting clarifications to the law.

    Don’t know if you’ll be here in 6 months, but I’m hoping you guys succeed.

  33. I love, love, love VidAngel! We have just recently discovered it and I am so in love with this amazing service! We have had a TVGuardian, which we love, but it doesn’t work on everything and I love that we can skip bad scenes and I can buy and resell any movie and I can watch without all the junk! I love that we can stream movies, edited! It’s so amazing and I hope and pray that you will win this battle! We are behind you 100%!!!

  34. Thank you for the service you provide!!! We love it! Thank you for making it possible to watch movies we would never would have seen, if it weren’t for the filters. If we are ever trying to find a specific older film, usually Netflixs doesn’t have it and amazon prime doesn’t have it! You are always the go to person!! I am sorry about the recent situation and we are behind you 1000%. Best of Luck!!

  35. You know, If you let us buy shares into your company earlier than later (buying into your company) that would fill you will liquidity to fight this battle. Just a thought!

  36. I just read the “Movie Studio Lawsuits” section from the Wikipedia article about Redbox:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Redbox

    I gather that Redbox signed agreements with the studios not to offer the DVDs until 28 days after their initial release (to help studios protect streaming revenue from other sources).

    I wonder if some similar agreement could be reached between Vidangel and the studios.

    What I really hope is that the studios have the good sense to work with Vidangel on this. I find it much much much more enjoyable to watch movies and shows with the things I don’t like filtered. It is so liberating and empowering. Once you’ve had that experience, you never want to go back. My wife and I definitely watch many things (including multiple TV series) that we would never watch if Vidangel did not exist. Were if not for Vidangel we would… read more books… get more work done… okay, not the end of the world, but we would definitely miss out on some things we really enjoy watching together and the studios would miss out on some revenue.

    This whole dispute reminds me a lot of the Uber/taxi dispute. Vidangel (like Uber) has produced an objectively superior product: more flexible, more powerful, useful to a broader base of customers. This causes the makers of inferior products (taxi companies, movie distributors that don’t allow filtering) to feel threatened and fight back in court.

    I am optimistic that the courts will have the wisdom to guide the parties to an arrangement wherein even if the studios get a bit of what they want, this unarguably superior product remains intact for the sake of the consumers.

    Go Vidangel!!! We’re cheering for you all the way.

  37. VidAngel is an oasis in a desert of filth. I can finally enjoy movies i grew up with and enjoyed with my kids without all the trash and bad language. I completely support VidAngel and will testify that I would not purchase these movies if I had to listen to the blasphemy and filth and see a bunch of half naked people.
    Thank you VidAngel and God Bless!!

  38. I love VidAngel! Our kids are seeing movies we wouldn’t let them see for years because of sometimes just one inappropriate scene. Classics like Ghostbusters! I can’t give much, but hoping a small contribution will at least help. We love your humor, even in fighting a legal battle!

  39. It makes you wonder WHY the studios insist on spreading their filth into families. Why would they object to cleaning it up? If they were smart they would make them family friendly to begin with or make 2 versions. The filth adds nothing. The pg13 and R movies exclude people whereas a G movie includes everyone. Hollywood will never get it. They had censors to begin with for a reason. I’m not a prude. I just get tired of being force-fed the porn and f-bombs in every movie like we are just a bunch of dumb cattle or porn addicts. I’m just sad that they still get paid before we filter it, but I’m glad we have a Vidangel option.

  40. Yeah so I feel like every time I tell the studios shut up and take my money (should I have censored that?) they corner me into piracy, it’s like I want to pay them and they won’t let me, interesting business model. I’ll be purchasing movies to help you guys out 🙂

  41. I hope with all my heart that you guys can win, and I think you can. But if things do go sour, please don’t die! Find a way to make it work. Whether it be increasing the price to what the competing services are doing or waiting till the streaming release date, please find a way to make them let you continue. This is an amazing product that we need. Don’t give up, the world needs VidAngel.

  42. I absolutely love this service, and would not watch about 90% of the movies we rented if not for the ability to content filter, most of the movies we have rented already or are on our watch list we would NEVER watch with our kids, and many of them not even just us adults, we can share some war films with our teenage sons while excluding the 99 F-words or brief sexual/nude scenes which are totally irrelevant to the plot, and we can enjoy PG-13 movies with all 4 of our kids ages 6 to 16 without having to worry about “why” it is PG-13, I am able to review everything that might be in it ahead of time and edit out only what I don’t want to see. So far I am extremely thrilled with this service, and it is a MAJOR part of our families entertainment. Without it, I do not have any satisfactory alternatives for watching these movies, we would have to stick to the lower rating movies only for our whole family to enjoy which nowadays is nearly impossible!! I pray you win this case, it would be a great step in the right direction, our country is in need of more companies like yours!!! keep up the good work!!

  43. I also would have never bought or viewed any of the movies that I watch on vidangel, so big studios wouldn’t have seen my money otherwise. I wonder how many people out there are the same and how much money these studios actually made because of you?

  44. My family sincerely appreciates the Vidangel content filtering. I also meet folks who struggle with addiction and Vidangel’s service of having films edited to remove certain content is profoundly beneficial for them. I believe the law has empowered you to provide legal content filtering services and as a result, public health and well being (especially those of minors) have benefited greatly. May your company grow and your services be used for the well being of everyone involved, especially children.

  45. As senior citizens we have passed on many movies that had a wonderful and entertaining story line but unfortunately shrouded in sexual innuendos and offensive words.

    Vidangel has allowed us to enjoy those movies without being offended and desensitized. We have been able to watch many of these with our grandchildren.

    We do live in a world where things have been turned upside down particularly our justice system. I do pray that you will prevail in the future without having to drag it on for years causing your lives to be in turmoil. Peace to you all.

  46. Dear VidAngel,
    KUTGW. We love you! Sounds like you have a solid case and that the law is with you. May the funniest side win. I’m not sure what we’d watch if we didn’t have your app. There’s no way I’d have shown my kids Ferris Bueller’s Day Off unless it was via your app. And that would be really sad. Save Ferris.

  47. We’re on your side and rooting for you. By the way… Whoever writes these blogs does a hilariously good job.

  48. I just finished watching Whiskey Tango Foxtrot, which I NEVER would have chosen to see without the benefit of filters. It was a highly affecting film, even without all the c-words included. ;c) I’m so glad to have seen it and will look for further films by the same production team. Please feel free to use my comments as part of your evidence in making the case that you are not robbing the studios of an existing part of their audiences.

    I sincerely hope you will continue to offer VidAngel services. If the film studios think that you are taking revenue away from them, they could consider:
    a. making the same great movies without the explicit language or nudity, so that VidAngel’s audience would pay to see the movies in theaters or would buy the films directly from the studios themselves;
    b. buying VidAngel in a non-hostile takeover and continuing to offer the same filtering services themselves (including in the purchase six-figure incomes for all original VidAngel employees, naturally)
    c. thanking and reimbursing VidAngel for providing valuable market research on audiences who see movies in spite of, not because of, objectionable add-ins;
    d. buying ad space on VidAngel’s site.

    Good luck with your battle!

  49. You really need to win this case. I’ve read through both lawsuits, and yours is clear and makes absolute sense. Though Disney makes sweeping claims, theirs is convoluted and technically not all with it. It seems pretty clear to me that VidAngel is totally legit. At first I thought Disney just wanted to keep their $5/rental streaming monopoly, but after reading VidAngel’s counter suit, I can tell that this is just Hollywood’s continuing effort to force its consumers to watch and accept the (lack of) morals of the rich and shameless.

    Please, please win this case! Much of the moral world depends on it. I don’t watch movies unless they are filtered!!

  50. I agree with so many of the other commenters; VidAngel is increasing revenue to the studios by allowing us to purchase and filter movies we would not otherwise purchase or view. Thank you VidAngel!

  51. Best of luck. I think we all knew this was coming.

    I’m really really hoping y’all win and it doesn’t cost too much to get there. My wife and I had been avoiding all but the classics and known movies for a while because of an increasing disdain for the junk that hollywood needlessly inserts in movies. But thanks to vid angel we’re now comfortable watching even the latest releases, just with ample filtering.

    Keep heads up during the fight. It can be overwhelming sometimes, but know you’ve got a ton of movie enthusiasts rooting for y’all!

  52. I didn’t realize that Vidangel buys a DVD, copies the content, edits it and then distributes it without paying the studio for the intellectual property they repossessing. I think it is a clear violation of copyright. I have used vidangel many times, but now that I know this is the case, I think I will stop. I will continue to use the service once it is no longer violating copyright. I realize that will make it more expensive, but I don’t want to cheat all the people that work hard at producing movies I love so much.

    1. Do you work for Disney or Fox? Your comment sounds like something one of their employees would say…

      I respectfully submit that if VidAngel is illegal, then so are Amazon.com, ebay, craigslist, Redbox, U.S. libraries, thrift stores, yard sells, etc. For example, watching a movie on VidAngel is no different than buying a used DVD from someone and then watching it. The studio was paid when the DVD – or better, the license to privately watch the movie – was first purchased new, and no new copies were created when the first owner sold their license to view it to you (by selling you their DVD). This is basic ownership rights established by the 10th amendment. The only twist here (which is still legal) is that VidAngel is filtering it for you and then letting you stream it directly from their vault so that you can get it quicker and easier. Both of these actions together are made legally possibly by the Family Movie Act.

      Disney’s upset because 1) they want everyone to buy new directly from them instead of buying used because they make a lot more money this way, and 2) they don’t want anyone skipping any of the filth in their “art” when watching it. Neither of these are legally enforceable, so that’s why they’ve baked it in such a confusing lawsuit so that it _looks_ legal to enforce.

      VidAngel really needs to win this suit. It’s scary when large corporations are able to redefine basic U.S. ownership rights via convoluted lawsuits and scare tactics.

    2. Mr. Clive. They buy it and then sell it to you. You sell it back to them. This is legal and if you’ve ever bought anything off Ebay, Craigslist, or a garage sale you’ve done the same thing Sir. Studio got paid, then VidAngel got paid, then you got paid. Everybody got paid.

  53. Our family loves you, Vidangel. We have enjoyed so many things together that we would never gave viewed, not on DVD, not in the theatre, not even with the filtering they do to show movies on certain television channels. My kids have said when they see a movie advertised and see the rating, “Well, we’ll watch it on Vidangel when it comes out.” Your unique service should continue, and I hope strongly that we will have the right to continue to have access to this entertainment. Please fight hard. We are behind you!

  54. I think the Hollywood Studios could care less about the filters. Their only issue is the fact that 1. Vidangel is streaming recently big blockbuster movies that are just coming to DVD. For example Star Wars The Force Awakens, Batman VS Superman. Hollywood isnt making any money in return. These studios need to paid in some aspect. VidAngel isnt charging enough (in Hollywoods mind) but thats what is making it ao successful. 3. VidAngel is putting as much content as possible without permission. Even Netflix doesnt have big blockbuster movies.
    VidAngel needs to to these into account

  55. Ohhhhh, I am so frustrated that when we FINALLY discover you, you are being sued! Vidangel has been such a blessing to our family and I cannot comprehend why the big companies are not getting the message that many Christian families are simply not willing to put the TRASH into our children”s hearts and minds. THANK YOU for this service you offer!

  56. I have heard of you some time ago. I myself have the ability to filter as I watch without any problem. I am not offended by things I choose to watch no matter the rating even if a x is attached to it. I think what you are trying to do is going to catch up to you and may result in a very big fine or even jail. The people at Hulu, Netflix, Redbox or any other rental place rather to stream or have physical media to watch are licensed and in fact do share advertising revenue and have to pay royalties on views. Even Youtube and Pandora have to pay so much for copyrighted content views. You buying the original media is not enough and it isn’t a license. If a title makes more than the original cost, it is highly dishonest to pocket that as a profit knowing you only have a license for private viewing. If you read the piracy and copyright warnings then you are in clear violation of that. If I tried to buy a dvd and then charged or rented it to people without studio permission, or without royalty agreement; I would be in jail and fined, so why aren’t you? I can see why the studios have issue with you on many fronts. Well I think right now your pants are down in an R-rated fashion that can’t be filtered out. After the boxing match with the studios you just might be paying royalties and be charging closer to $3 to $5 per week, $1 is not enough. It tends to allow artists to feel they work for free. I know you cater to religious people mostly, but even they are not without doing questionable or possibly illegal things.

  57. I am sickened by this lawsuit! And thoroughly disgusted with Disney, Warner, Twentieth Century and LucasFilm! There are several movies we watched or purchased that we never would have without your services. They made $ because of you. Figures, huh?! Thank you VidAngel for all you do. We are rooting for you!

  58. I’ve used ClearPlay for over a decade and switched to VidAngel a few months ago and haven’t looked back. Love your service!!!

    BTW, when Hollywood was trying to get people to adopt DVDs and re-buy all their previously VHS owned movies, one argument\promise they made was that they’d release different versions of their movies on the same disk, including the “airplane” version. They never fulfilled that promise. And they keep fighting the consumers when services like CleanFlicks, ClearPlay, and now VidAngel try to fulfill it for them.

  59. Its really sad to me that when the studios have these Blockbuster Opening Weekends, making MILLIONS over their costs, that they still want to come after our $1 purchase/sell back options. When is it ever going to be ENOUGH?!! Why should this even matter to the big studios? Just another example of our options being limited. I realize that this is a simplistic view, but by making simple issues complicated, we often get lulled into passiveness. Hollywood knows this & has been playing this game for along time. Time for ALL of us to stand united behind companies like VidAngel! Fight to have a CHOICE! Fight for our FAMILIES!

  60. My family members are huge fans of Vidangel. I have a husband who loves action movies, but before your service was available he would never watch them, because of the language, etc. Now he can filter out what he doesn’t want to see and still enjoy the movie. Families that care about what they view in movies are being dis-serviced by the studios that brought this lawsuit against Vidangel. The studios have the right to make movies how they wish, but families should also have the right to watch them without content they deem offensive. I’m not familiar with any of the legalese involved, I just know we love Vidangel and support you! Remember, “Tough times don’t last, tough people do!” Stay strong Vidangel family!

  61. Its interesting, how is what the hollywood studios talking about any different then movies that come on network TV? I guess because THEY can collect money on it those movies are ok. But if one person views something as inappropriate and another thinks it ok thats just too bad Hollywood gets to decide for you, and they tell you when you get to watch it, otherwise too bad.

  62. You would think that studios would be glad that so many more families are watching their work!!! I don’t get it but I am happy VidAngel is making headway towards movie watching that I would never do without these filters.

  63. Go David Quinto!!!

    Go Vidangel!!!

    And to the studios, I would say this: if you want more revenue from Redbox and Vidangel why not charge more for DVDs? You have complete control over what to charge and when. Why not adapt to the modern world and maintain your revenue without suing your partners? There are so many ways you could go about doing this.

    Furthermore, can you PLEASE try to be more helpful to the movie filtering crowd in general? Historically, you have been incredibly hostile, shamefully so I think. Why not move past that? The Hollywood types I know are justly proud of their libertarian instincts on everything from marijuana to homosexuality — and their eagerness to accommodate minority groups (kosher meals, wheelchair ramps, transgender bathroom rights, whatever).

    But when my family wants to watch “The Walk” without the profanity, suddenly Hollywood bristles. Suddenly Hollywood needs to control what people do in their own homes. Suddenly “because we want to” stops being a good reason. Suddenly the noble talk about empathy/liberty/minority accommodation collapses into a sea of excuses, roadblocks, and brutal lawsuits.

    Look, we don’t judge the makers of the “The Walk” for putting in dozens of references to excrement and genitalia. We understand that real people curse, that it heightens the humor and dramatic effect, etc. So why do you have to judge and harass the viewers who enjoy and appreciate the movie more when these things are silenced? Or the viewers who could not see the film otherwise?

    It is 2016 folks. Personalized filtering should no longer be controversial. Instead of attacking Vidangel, why not encourage it, support it, invest in it, maybe even try to acquire it? There are many helpful responses and many obviously unhelpful responses. Why not at least look into few of the former?

  64. I do not watch TV. Even if I found a decent show, the advertisement they sprinkle throughout programs are sometimes crude, vulgar, undermine morality, and have nothing to do with an audience looking for clean entertainment. When it comes to movies, even when Hellywood has a good story, the perverts in the industry cannot help themselves from putting their vulgar fingerprints over it. One lewd comment are act is one too many.

    The movies I watch on VidAngel are movies that my family and I would never view unfiltered. I purchase them and pay a dollar for a filter that extracts the poor choices of the movie’s producers. I can keep them in a library for my use at any time or I can sell my copy. I have not figured out how to sell my copy to someone else and pay for their filtering, but gift certificates may be something VidAngel is saving for the future. For the time being, I sell my copy back to them. I can only sell one copy back because I only bought one copy. Maybe one day I’ll be able to buy two copies and sell both, one back to VidAngel and other as a gift certificate. It is nice to have options with movies I would not have even considered watching unfiltered. Thanks VidAngel.

  65. Here’s an interesting question. How is this company justifying paying employees to watch thousands of hours of filth so that every second of every movie is documented for the filters? Kind of like a owning a grocery store that sells cigarettes I guess. It’s fine as long as you’re not the one being exposed.

    1. Hi Cody, VidAngel has a large community of taggers who agree to what is called the “No taking one for the team policy”. This policy means that our Taggers will only review a movie for potentially objectionable content if it is a movie that they would personally choose to watch if they were not being paid.

  66. Go get’em VidAngel! You should produce a movie about Mr. Quinto, complete with a cameo appearance at the end as he’s helping you win against the movie studios. I kknow a film producer with some big-name movies in his quiver. Shall I broker the deal?

  67. been viewing Vidangle movies for about a month and I love it. So many movies I wanted to watch but chose not to because of the language nudity etc. Thanks so much for this service. I sincerely hope that you find a way to continue.

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