News Corp has made the extraordinary threat of pulling its Fox Network off the air in the US as a result of an escalating feud with a tech start-up controlled by one of its former executives.
According to Bloomberg, News Corp is currently pursuing legal action to shut down a tech start-up called Aero, which rebroadcasts free-to-air television channels in the US for $US12 per month.
News Corp has stated that it will pull the Fox Network off the air and will broadcast the network on cable only if courts rule in favour of the service.
Aero is owned by IAC/InterActiveCorp, whose chairman and chief executive, Barry Diller, helped to launch the Fox Network while serving as a News Corp executive during the late 1980s.
“We need to be able to be fairly compensated for our content,” says News Corp chief operating officer Chase Carey said.
“This is not an ideal path we look to pursue, but we can’t sit idly by and let an entity steal our signal. We will move to a subscription model if that’s our only recourse.
“We will continue to aggressively pursue our rights in the courts, as well as pursue all relevant political avenues, and we believe we will prevail.”