Optus to take fight over TV Now service to High Court

Australian telecommunications company Optus said it would appeal to the country’s High Court over a Federal Court ruling against its TV Now mobile phone service, which allows subscribers to watch near-live sports programmes originally broadcast on free-to-air television.

Optus was forced to suspend the service last month after the Federal Court upheld an appeal against the company by the Australian Football League and National Rugby League – the governing bodies of Aussie Rules football and rugby league in the country – and the Telstra telco, which is the two leagues’ official live internet rights-holder. The governing bodies and Telstra successfully challenged an earlier Federal Court ruling that Optus did not breach copyright laws.

“Australian consumers want legitimate access to content on any device regardless of the genre and we want to continue making the latest technologies available to Australians to meet this demand,” Optus chief executive Paul O’Sullivan said. “This is a very important public policy issue that needs to be determined by the highest court in the land, to give clarity to both consumers and the industry.”