All posts by Matthew Faraci

VidAngel Responds to 9th Circuit Decision, Now Calls on Supporters to Call Their Members of Congress

(Provo, UT—January 4, 2016) VidAngel, the market-leading entertainment platform empowering users to filter language, nudity, violence, and other content from movies and TV shows, is engaged in a high-profile legal battle with Disney, Warner Bros, 20th Century Fox, and Lucasfilm. These Hollywood studios have taken legal action in an effort to eviscerate the 2005 Family Movie Act and prevent VidAngel from lawfully empowering parents and families to filter content on modern devices.

 

Today, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals denied VidAngel’s request for an emergency stay of a preliminary injunction order recently issued against the service by a Los Angeles federal court.

 

CEO Neal Harmon has issued the following statement:

“Congress passed the Family Movie Act in 2005 because Hollywood had sued every company that offered content filtering for private, in-home viewing. Today, a small group of Hollywood studios, led by Disney, is using the legal process to try to render that law meaningless.

“We are asking our supporters to call their members of Congress and urge them to update to the Family Movie Act with new language that cannot be misconstrued in court, making it even clearer that filtering is absolutely legal in the streaming age.

“We are disappointed by today’s decision, but remain optimistic about our long-term prospects on appeal. Until our appeal is decided, we regret that VidAngel will not be able to offer filtered content. We continue to be grateful for the massive outpouring of support from across the country.”

 

VidAngel also encourages its supporters to go this page started by a Florida family in support of services such as ours: SaveFiltering.com

 

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About VidAngel

VidAngel is the market-leading entertainment platform empowering users to filter language, nudity, violence, and other content from movies and TV shows. VidAngel’s success has been well documented, earning a #1 BestCompany.com user rating and making VidAngel one of the fastest growing entertainment companies in the U.S.

More than Two Dozen Leaders Standing with VidAngel in Legal Battle with Disney while 30,000 Donors Contribute to Legal Defense Fund

Led by The Parents Television Council and including Enough is Enough, National Center on Sexual Exploitation, the American Family Association, Media Research Center, and other flagship nonprofits, grassroots support for VidAngel continues to grow

 

National Research Group poll reveals 82% of Values Audience parents are concerned about explicit content in movies and TV shows, and 57 million Americans are likely to use VidAngel’s service

(Los Angeles, CA—September 20, 2016) VidAngel, the market-leading entertainment platform empowering users to filter language, nudity, violence, and other content from movies and TV shows, continues to earn a surge of grassroots support as the company prepares for its preliminary injunction hearing in late October. Disney—along with Warner Bros, 20th Century Fox, and Lucasfilm—has taken legal action to prevent VidAngel from providing families the ability to filter content on modern devices in their homes as explicitly authorized under the 2005 Family Movie Act. Sony, Universal, and MGM chose not to join the lawsuit. 

Nearly two dozen leaders of well-known non-profit organizations, led by The Parents Television Council, have publicly expressed their support for and solidarity with the Utah-based startup company. Last week, as VidAngel filed its opposition to the preliminary injunction, many submitted declarations to the court, detailing how the service is clearly in the public interest. Additionally, nearly 30,000 donors from around the nation have now contributed to the company’s growing legal defense fund. 

Dr. Jim Garlow, Senior Pastor of Skyline Church in San Diego, heard daily on 800 radio stations nationwide, added his name to the list of supporters, stating:

“VidAngel offers a service that is critically important. Our community, which represents thousands of families, cares deeply about being able to make thoughtful decisions about the entertainment they consume in the home. By empowering our families to filter language, sex, profanity, blasphemy, and other content they object to, VidAngel and other filtering services open up a whole new world of possibility. A world in which we can share important movies and programs that teach valuable lessons, but in a way that is safe for our kids. As I stand with VidAngel as a valuable resource to have, movie filtering is absolutely in the public interest, and can be a vital option to our community.”

Tim Winter, President of the Parents Television Council, states:

“The studios that are suing VidAngel must believe that if a standard is good, then a double-standard is twice as good. When Hollywood believes content should be altered or filtered, they eagerly step in and do it themselves. About a decade ago, NBC secured the broadcast rights to the beloved children’s animated series VeggieTales; but when the network aired the program, they removed references to God—despite the program being created by Christian producers who hoped to share Christian values. And when the television program Duck Dynasty was among the most-watched programs every week, ‘bleeps’ were edited into the programming to suggest harsh profanity was being used, even when no actual profanity was in fact being used. The network wanted to create the false impression in order to bring more ‘edginess’ to the show, despite the fact that the show was so popular precisely because it was squeaky-clean. And on every program on every network, promotional materials are placed above or below the program during its broadcast. 

“The ‘altering’ of the producer’s ‘work’ occurs all hours of every day on every network. The notion that Hollywood must vigorously prevent content filtering or editing for the sake of the creative community doesn’t pass the laugh-test.

“VidAngel is the only service that allows consumers to filter out offensive content while streaming the remaining content to their personal viewing devices, wherever they happen to be. VidAngel is clearly operating within both the spirit and the letter of the Family Movie Act. VidAngel allows each parent and each family to consume entertainment content precisely in accord with their unique standards. If the Hollywood studios convince the Court to impede or interfere with VidAngel’s legitimate and lawful business, American families will be deprived of the very right granted to them by Congress in the Family Movie Act.”

Leaders Submitting Declarations

The following is a list of leaders who submitted declarations to the court on behalf of VidAngel last week.

  • Tim Winter, President, Parents Television Council
  • Patrick A Trueman, President & CEO, National Center on Sexual Exploitation
  • L. Brent Bozell, President, Media Research Center
  • Andrea Lafferty, President, Traditional Values Coalition
  • Bob Waliszewski, Director, Focus on the Family’s Plugged In
  • Donna Rice Hughes, President, Enough is Enough
  • Gary Bauer, President, American Values
  • George Roller, Ambassador, Center for Christian Statesmanship
  • Harry Jackson, Bishop of the International Communion of Evangelical Churches
  • Matt Kibbe, Chief Community Organizer, Free the People
  • Gary Marx, President, Madison Strategies
  • Rebecca Hagelin, Author and Family Expert
  • David Bozell, President, for America
  • Tim Wildmon, President, American Family Association
  • Bryan and Diane Schwartz, Founders, Family Goals
  • Ted Baehr, Publisher of Movieguide and Chairman of the Christian Film and Television Commission
  • David Barton, Founder and President, Wallbuilders
  • Rick Green, Host, Wallbuilders Live Radio
  • Tim Barton, Chief Operating Officer, Wallbuilders
  • Connor Boyack, President, Libertas

The Values Audience: VidAngel’s Core Constituency

The Values Audience is a segment of the U.S. population—52 million adults representing 37% of the entertainment market—whose faith is extremely important to them and is part of their daily lives.

inspire-infographic_portrait

  • Almost half (46%) of this segment identifies as Evangelical or “born-again” Christian, compared to 28% among the general population.
  • 64% attend weekly religious services,compared to 38% among the general population.
  • 52% pray several times a day, compared to 27% among the general population.
  • 34% list religious activities as an interest they enjoy (vs.17% among the general population, and 29% attend bible study (vs.14% among the general population).
  • The Values Audience is equally split on gender, and skews more towards younger adults. The majority (52%) are under age 34, with 29% ages 18-24.
  • 51% of the Values Audience have kids, compared to 40% of the general population. This segment is also more likely to have younger children under age 12 (37% vs. 30% among the general population).
  • The majority are Caucasian (57%), but the Values Audience has a higher percentage of African-Americans (18% vs. 12% among the general population), and Hispanics (18% vs. 15% among the general population).

The Values Audience: Deeply Concerned about Content

  • 82% of Values Audience parents are likely to say it is “very important” to know about any explicit content before deciding if their child should watch, compared to 72% among the general population.
  • 57% of Values Audience adults are much more likely to say it is “very important” to know about any explicit content before deciding whether or not they, themselves, will watch a TV show or movie, compared to 34% among the general population.
  • 59% of the Values Audience say they use website resources and tools to monitor explicit content their family watches, vs. only 30% among the general population.
  • 64% of Values Audience parents say they use parental controls to monitor and control the TV and movie content their children watch at home vs. 53% among the general population

The next step in the Disney v. VidAngel case is a preliminary injunction hearing to be argued in the Central District of California federal court on October 31, 2016. To view the legal defense fund, click here: https://www.vidangel.com/donate

Attorney David W. Quinto, Guardian of the OSCARS for Decades, Resigns Prestigious Hollywood Law Firm to Make the Case for VidAngel

via PRNewswire

Contact: press@vidangel.com

With more than three decades of experience, known both for representing Hollywood studios–including two of the plaintiffs in the VidAngel case–and for protecting the ©OSCAR® and ACADEMY AWARDS®, and representing the Producers Guild of America, David W. Quinto joins VidAngel as its General Counsel

LOS ANGELES, Aug. 3, 2016 /PRNewswire/– VidAngel, the market-leading entertainment platform empowering users to filter language, nudity, violence, and other content from movies and TV shows, is pleased to announce that legendary Hollywood intellectual property attorney David W. Quinto, who was long a partner at powerhouse firms Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan LLP and Davis Wright Tremaine LLP, has joined VidAngel as its general counsel. Mr. Quinto’s first task will be to spearhead its defense of a lawsuit brought by four major Hollywood studios hoping to enjoin VidAngel from offering its filtering service to the public. With more than three decades of experience in entertainment and intellectual property, including protecting the ©OSCARS, Quinto has focused on copyright, trademark, trade secret, unfair competition, and Internet-based cases.

Mr. Quinto’s first task will be to spearhead its defense of a lawsuit brought by four major Hollywood studios hoping to enjoin VidAngel from offering its filtering service to the public. With more than three decades of experience in entertainment and intellectual property, including protecting the ©OSCARS, Quinto has focused on copyright, trademark, trade secret, unfair competition, and Internet-based cases.

“David’s decision to join VidAngel as General Counsel represents the single most significant development in the case to date. Having successfully represented iconic Hollywood institutions such as the ©OSCAR, the ACADEMY AWARDS® and the Producers Guild of America, as well clients dealing with cutting edge Internet legal issues, there is no one better suited to oversee our legal strategy,” said Neal Harmon, CEO of VidAngel. “David wrote the original legal opinion upon which VidAngel’s business model is based, and today’s announcement demonstrates his full confidence that values consumers seeking to filter content will prevail in court.”

“It is a privilege to be asked by VidAngel to focus on winning a landmark copyright case sure to make new law. I am confident that the studios have overreached by trying to enjoin a service expressly authorized by Congress for the protection of children, and I look forward to the opportunity to demonstrate that in court,” said David W. Quinto, General Counsel at VidAngel.

Respected Los Angeles law firm Baker Marquart LLP will continue to represent VidAngel in defending the lawsuit recently brought against the Utah-based company by Disney, Twentieth Century Fox, Warner Brothers, and Lucasfilm, and in prosecuting VidAngel’s antitrust claim against them. Mr. Quinto will oversee all aspects of the case. VidAngel chose Baker Marquart based on the firm’s litigation successes, including the recent landmark ruling in the Central District of California that FilmOn was entitled to the compulsory license enjoyed by large cable companies that deal with TV networks. The opposing plaintiffs in that case included ABC (a division of Disney) and Fox.

ABOUT DAVID W QUINTO

David Quinto is a veteran intellectual property attorney, with over 33 years’ experience. His practice focuses on copyright, trademark, trade dress, trade secret, unfair competition, and Internet-related matters, as well as general commercial litigation. Over the past three decades, David has represented a broad range of clients, including the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (for which he was responsible for protecting the ACADEMY AWARDS® and ©OSCAR® marks and copyright, as well as the annual Academy Awards© telecast), Lockheed/Lockheed Martin, Home Depot, Edwards Lifesciences, Grendene, S.A, Sae-A Trading Co. Ltd., Mattel, Avery Dennison, Bonneville International, GKN Aerospace Transparency Systems (Luton) Ltd., Samsung, ASCAP, the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, the Producers Guild of America (for whom he obtained the first-ever “No Action” letter for a certification mark from the Antitrust Division of the Department of Justice), and the America’s Cup Organizing Committee.Mr. Quinto is the co-author of the national practitioner’s guide to trade secret litigation,

Mr. Quinto is the co-author of the national practitioner’s guide to trade secret litigation, Trade Secrets: Law and Practice (3d edition published by LexisNexis 2014; earlier editions published by Oxford University Press), which analyzes the ins and outs of trade secrets disputes from the viewpoints of plaintiffs, defendants, criminal defendants, and businesses seeking to avoid or investigate potential misappropriations. Mr. Quinto earlier authored Law of Internet Disputes (3 editions published by Aspen Law& Business) and was a contributing author of Trade Marks at the Limit (Edward Elgar Publishing 2006).

About VidAngel

VidAngel is the market-leading entertainment platform empowering users to filter language, nudity, violence, and other content from movies and TV shows. VidAngel’s success has been well documented, earning a #1 BestCompany.com user rating and making VidAngel one of the fastest growing entertainment companies in the U.S.

Logo – http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20160615/379479LOGO

 

VidAngel Files Antitrust Suit Against Disney, Twentieth Century Fox, Warner Brothers, and Lucasfilm

via PRNewswire

Contact: press@vidangel.com

The popular service empowering users to filter movies and TV shows for language, nudity, violence, and other items takes legal action to ensure that Hollywood studios comply with the 2005 Family Movie Act and discontinue their efforts to undermine the law

LOS ANGELES, July 13, 2016 /PRNewswire/ — VidAngel, the market-leading entertainment platform empowering users to filter language, nudity, violence, and other items from movies and TV shows, filed an antitrust lawsuit today against Disney, Twentieth Century Fox, Warner Brothers, and Lucasfilm in the United States District Court, Central District of California, Western Division. The legal counterstrike comes on the heels of a suit brought by the same four studios last month, attempting to shut down the service.
Neal Harmon, CEO of VidAngel, has issued the following statement:

Baker Marquart LLP, counsel for VidAngel, filed the suit in U.S. District Court, pointing out that the Plaintiffs’ “carefully selected and misleading allegations distort relevant facts and law” by “suggest [ing] 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 suit also states that the Plaintiffs, in asking to shut down VidAngel, are “asking that the Court repeal a federal statute enacted to protect American families.” VidAngel details how the company purchases a legal copy of each title, matching a DVD to each user, and argues that its service is a value add for the four studios because users are purchasing titles they otherwise would avoid without being able to apply filters.

The complaint states: “Plaintiffs have interfered with VidAngel’s attempts to partner with streaming content providers to filter movies. Plaintiffs have also sought to improperly expand their copyright monopoly, seeking to deprive consumers of their right to buy and sell copyrighted works. As alleged in VidAngel’s Counter-Complaint, Plaintiffs should be held accountable for their improper actions.”

“The Plaintiffs in the VidAngel case claim that this is not about their desire to stop yet another filtering company, rather it’s about our process for buying, preparing and transmitting filtered content. This case is fundamentally about filtering, and as that becomes clear in the legal process, we are confident that the courts will uphold the law of the land,” said Neal Harmon, CEO of VidAngel. “We hope that the filing will help these studios to realize that they are asking the court to shut down a service that will allow millions to filter content for themselves and their children.”

The company is asking the judge to declare that VidAngel and its process is fully legal, and is also seeking damages against the studios for interfering with its business.

View the entire filing by clicking here: https://blog.vidangel.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/VidAngel-Answer-and-Counter-Complaint.pdf

About VidAngel

VidAngel is the market-leading entertainment platform empowering users to filter language, nudity, violence, and other items from movies and TV shows. VidAngel’s success has been well documented, earning a #1 BestCompany.com user rating and making VidAngel one of the fastest growing entertainment companies in the U.S.

Logo – http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20160615/379479LOGO

VidAngel Enlists Respected Hollywood Law Firm to Defend the Rights of Consumers

via PRNewswire

Contact: press@vidangel.com

In response to legal action brought by Disney, Twentieth Century Fox, Warner Brothers, and Lucasfilm, rapidly growing movie filtering service engages highly respected law firm Baker Marquart, known for winning a landmark copyright ruling

LOS ANGELES, June 15, 2016 /PRNewswire/ — VidAngel, the rapidly growing movie filtering service that empowers consumers by allowing them to filter certain content from movies or TV shows they own, has retained respected Los Angeles law firm Baker Marquart LLP to represent VidAngel in responding to the lawsuit recently brought against the Utah-based company by fourHollywood studios—Disney, Twentieth Century Fox, Warner Brothers, and Lucasfilm. VidAngel chose Baker Marquart based on the firm’s recent success, including the recent landmark ruling in the Central District that FilmOn could legally apply for the same compulsory license available to large cable companies that deal with TV networks.

Neal Harmon, CEO of VidAngel, has issued the following statement:

“Technological innovation has transformed the way we live, offering users customized solutions that empower them to consume in a way that meets individual needs and desires. Just as iTunes transformed the way people listen to their music, VidAngel is transforming the way people view their content, in the way that works best for them.

“We created this company because—as parents and consumers—we understand deeply the surging demand for filtering content to suit the needs of families.

“We are confident in our case, and equally confident that the interests of consumers will prevail. It is for this reason we have retained Baker Marquart, a highly respected Los Angeles firm that has represented innovators and prevailed in similar landmark legal disputes.”

About VidAngel

VidAngel is an innovative, consumer-driven service that empowers consumers to filter movies and TV shows they own, viewing content via a customized experience that offers the highest degree of personal choice in the entertainment marketplace.

www.vidangel.com

Logo – http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20160615/379479LOGO