A legal battle over TV rights in Australia is likely to end up in the High Court, after telco Optus said it would go in appeal against a decision that prevented its customers from watching football matches on their mobile phones.
The telco is looking to the High Court after the Federal Court said its TV Now service was a breach of copyright owned by Telstra, the National Rugby League's (NRL) and the Australian Football League (AFL).
According to Optus, it would seek leave to appeal the ban in the High Court given its belief that consumers should be able to watch matches on delay at a time of their choosing, as in other countries.
Earlier this year, a judge ruled that Optus' service did not breach copyright, which saw an immediate appeal by the football codes and Telstra, who claimed Optus' service hurt their revenue.
Telstra paid $153 million to the AFL for live streaming matches to its customers.
Speaking at the company's fourth-quarter results, Optus CEO Paul O'Sullivan said the content was already paid for through its advertising; Optus being one of the country's largest TV advertisers. ''If we're then charged a second time for it, well then naturally that's going to force the industry to have to pass on some of the pricing to customers,'' he said. ''That's why we believe it's important individuals should be free to record from what is broadcast material and watch it back in the place of their choice.''