Feeds

Branson points legal sabre at Sky

Virgin not lying down

The Power of One Infographic

Virgin Media isn't going to take Sky's withdrawal of its basic channels lying down, and has threatened legal action for abuse of a dominant position if Sky doesn't agree to independent arbitration within 30 days.

Virgin pays Sky to carry Sky's channels on its cable network, but Sky also carries Virgin's channels (including Living and Bravo) on its satellite network. It is how Sky compares the value of those channels from which a legal case could be built.

No one is suggesting Bravo is worth the same as Sky One, but Virgin does claim that viewing figures for Sky's channels are falling, while the numbers watching its own channels continue to rise.

Over the last three years, Virgin's figures show a 20 per cent drop in the number of homes with Virgin Media (cable) tuned to Sky channels, while reckoning that the number of Sky (satellite) homes tuned to Virgin channels increased 15 per cent in the same period.

Despite this, Virgin says Sky is asking for more money, while paying less - doubling the former while cutting the latter by 85 per cent, and Virgin claims this is unfair.

Should the matter end up in court we'll be treated to the amusing sight of Sky claiming that Sky One isn't an important channel, and it'll be quick to point out the success Virgin has had getting rights for on-demand delivery of programmes.

It could be that this is just sabre rattling, and a further attempt to portray Virgin as the plucky little-guy being bullied by the bigger corporation - something Virgin has done successfully many times. But in reality this is a competition between two large global companies, and this threat is far from the last act in the developing drama. ®

The Power of One Infographic

More from The Register

next story
Auntie remains MYSTIFIED by that weekend BBC iPlayer and website outage
Still doing 'forensics' on the caching layer – Beeb digi wonk
Major problems beset UK ISP filth filters: But it's OK, nobody uses them
It's almost as though pr0n was actually rather popular
Microsoft unsheathes cheap Android-killer: Behold, the Lumia 530
Say it with us: I'm King of the Landfill-ill-ill-ill
All those new '5G standards'? Here's the science they rely on
Radio professor tells us how wireless will get faster in the real world
Apple orders huge MOUNTAIN of 80 MILLION 'Air' iPhone 6s
Bigger, harder trouser bulges foretold for fanbois
Yorkshire cops fail to grasp principle behind BT Fon Wi-Fi network
'Prevent people that are passing by to hook up to your network', pleads plod
US freemium mobile network eyes up Europe
FreedomPop touts 'free' calls, texts and data
Oh girl, you jus' didn't: Level 3 slaps Verizon in Netflix throttle blowup
Just hook us up to more 10Gbps ports, backbone biz yells in tit-for-tat spat
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.