Speaking at the CCW-SATCON conference in New York today, Capitol Broadcasting’s Jim Goodmon said he believes local broadcasters need to adopt new “geofencing” technology that will prevent OTT viewers from accessing station programming that is not locally produced when they are out of their home market. And he’s working on a solution.
With the growth of OTT, local broadcasters need to implement safeguards to make sure the content they license for their markets stays in their markets, one industry leader says.
“The real issue we see with OTT is security of the signal,” said James Goodmon Jr., VP of Capitol Broadcasting, which owns WRAL Raleigh, N.C. “The CBS affiliate in New York is supposed to be distributed in New York, and the CBS affiliate in Greensboro, N.C., is supposed to be distributed in Greensboro, N.C.”
Speaking at the CCW-SATCON conference in New York today, Goodmon said he believes local broadcasters need to adopt new “geofencing” technology that will prevent viewers from accessing station programming that is not locally produced when they are out of their home market.
Although, in many cases, OTT users are currently only allowed to access that content while within the parameters of their market, the controls are easy to break through, Goodmon says, meaning someone in, say, Los Angeles could watch his station as easily as someone in the market it’s meant for.
The technology currently in place is so easy to work around that a 5-year-old can do it, he said.
In fact, Goodmon is so convinced that, through a second company, he has already developed a mechanism for tracking users’ locations through their cellphones. The idea is that once OTT servers get that information, they can use it to prevent out-of-market users from watching.
Goodmon said he still has to get service providers to agree to the plan before he, and other broadcasters, can put it into use.
Goodmon said he is all for viewers accessing WRAL on multiple platforms when they are in the market. He also is a proponent of viewers, no matter where they are located, watching the station’s local news.
But when viewers can get network or syndicated shows — which are expensive to license — it devalues the programming and impedes rights negotiations, he said.
Read more CCW-SATCON coverage here.