Illegal streaming is a major problem for broadcasters and content creators. Now a ruling against a major IPTV provider shows the tide is turning in their favor.
Let‘s discuss DISH Network‘s big court victory over Jadoo TV and what it means for ending media piracy.
First, Who Are the Key Players in This Fight?
Jadoo TV was founded in 2011 by CEO Sajid Sohail to deliver live Indian TV channels and VOD content to viewers across the globe. The company offered customized set-top boxes with pre-loaded apps to access licensed and unlicensed streams. At its peak, Jadoo TV served over 100,000 active subscribers.
On the other side is the International Broadcaster Coalition Against Piracy (IBCAP), with members like BBC Studios, Sony Pictures, Disney, Scripps, and beIN Sports. Formed in 2014, this group coordinates anti-piracy efforts across multiple countries.
In 2018, IBCAP partnered with DISH Network to file a lawsuit alleging that Jadoo TV was streaming content without permission, costing them huge losses.
Timeline: How the Lawsuit Unfolded Over 5 Years
November 2018 – DISH and IBCAP file lawsuit against Jadoo TV and Sohail
September 2020 – California court rejects Sohail‘s motion to dismiss
March 2023 – DISH/IBCAP file for summary judgment, Sohail files counter motion
Judge grants DISH‘s motion, rules Sohail personally liable for piracy as Jadoo CEO
This was a long legal battle, but ultimately the court agreed that Jadoo TV‘s CEO could not escape responsibility.
Holding Sohail Personally Accountable – A Powerful Precedent
In his ruling, Judge Charles R. Breyer stated that Sohail was the "guiding spirit" behind Jadoo TV‘s copyright infringement. As founder, CEO, and majority shareholder, Sohail was positioned to change company policies enabling piracy.
This sets an important precedent for executives – they can‘t just hide behind a corporate shield while permitting illegal activity.
According to IBCAP‘s director, Chris Kuelling:
"Here, the owner and CEO of one of the most popular South Asian services offering infringing content will not be permitted to hide behind a corporate shield and has been found personally liable…"
With the court victory, DISH can now recover damages from both Jadoo TV and Sohail directly.
Beyond the Lawsuit – Limiting Access to Affordable Content
For Jadoo TV‘s thousands of customers, though, the verdict represents a loss of convenient access to entertainment options at an affordable price.
Piracy fills a gap where legal services fall short. Broadcasters seeking to curb illegal streaming may need to partner on more low-cost bundles and streaming platforms.
While DISH is justified in protecting its rights, exclusive content deals also drive up costs for consumers. It‘s an ongoing balancing act.
As an avid streamer yourself, how do you feel about this lawsuit ruling? Should executives be held more accountable for piracy enabled by their companies? I‘d love to hear your perspectives in the comments!