In a historic new agreement announced today, streaming TV giant FilmOn Networks will broadcast the United States’ massive news and entertainment channel Voice of America worldwide. The move will make it available on computers and mobile phones.
The Smith-Mundt Modernization Act of 2013 made it legal for Voice of America to disseminate its content within U.S. borders for the first time and FilmOn is the first to strike a deal to stream its television shows.
“This is an exciting partnership that will make available some of the most socially and politically important content that America has to offer the world,” FilmOn’s CEO Alki David said. “FilmOn is extremely proud to be chosen work with the federal government in this way to provide our viewers with an unrivalled service on a global basis.”
Voice of America was founded in 1942 and produces 1,800 hours of top quality programming every week in 46 languages. It is traditionally broadcast via a network of transmitting stations operated by the International Broadcasting Bureau as well as local affiliates and attracts a weekly audience of 164 million people outside of the USA.
Under the new arrangement, FilmOn is broadcasting a channel exclusively dedicated to VOA’s English-language programming, plus an additional channel, VOA Persian News Network, which will transmit in Iran’s official language, Persian.
VOA’s highly successful programming ranges from flagship news shows such as The Correspondents to hit entertainment programs like Border Crossings, a music magazine show that features interviews with stars such as Beyonce, Taylor Swift, Lady Gaga and Katy Perry.
FilmOn Network’s agreement with VOA follows hot on the heels of agreements it has signed with an impressive stable of broadcasters around the globe, including euronews, ABC in Australia, Deutsche Welle in Germany, TVE in Spain and France 24. It also joins the 600 licensed channels and tens of thousands of VoDs that FilmOn users enjoy for free.
“Leading broadcasters are choosing to work with FilmOn Networks in order to take advantage of the numerous opportunities that are created by reaching our 40 million unique monthly viewers via digital platforms,” David said. “Wherever you are in the world, FilmOn.com offers a unique choice of content that includes everything from the world’s most respected news channels to the best live entertainment, music and sport.”
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The VOA agreement comes during a period of significant growth for FilmOn.com, which has responded to the Supreme Court’s ruling on Aereo with a bold new move. Because the Court designated companies like FilmOn and Aereo as “cable companies”, which should therefore be regulated like cable companies, FilmOn has filed for Compulsory License under the Copyright Act of 1976 and can now legally stream local broadcast signals.
But, upping the ante on serving consumers the TV they want when and where they want it, the company has also launched a new service that lets viewers remotely watch local television broadcasts. Through its “Teleport” technology, a person in Los Angeles (for example) can connect to the service via a micro antenna assigned exclusively to that person at a remote location in any of 18 cities across America.
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This mini antenna is attached to a micro desktop computer in the same location as the antenna, so that the user can view local television available to that micro antenna and watch the signal from the micro desktop that has also been assigned to the user for that session.
The service is available to subscribers for a small monthly fee and is a legal and convenient alternative to Aereo’s service which shut down in June.
Watch VOA at here.
Watch VOA Persian TV here.
Find our more about FilmOn’s services here.