Zediva Goes Dark

I wrote about Zediva last month, and the fact that it was taken to court for violating copyright law. If you recall, the company had a clever idea for streaming movie content over the Internet; a customer would rent a physical DVD that would then be placed in a DVD player and the content would be streamed to that individual customer. No postage, no shipping delays–it seemed pretty simple and straightforward.

The case landed in a U.S. District Court in California, and on August 1, the judge handed down a preliminary injuction against the service. Last week, Zediva sent an email to registered customers announcing that they were closing down their service while they “figure out our next steps.” The email indicated that they hoped to be back online soon, but did not know when–or if–that would happen.

Zediva is a bold experiment that pushed the limits of copyrights, and so far, the court appears to sided with the view that the content creators have the ultimate right to negotiate where and how their content is distributed. Some might argue that that concept has been applied inconsistently, but unless Zediva can prevail on an appeal, it looks as though this one joins ivi.tv and FilmOn as video streaming services that have stepped over the line. No doubt this will not deter everyone, and there will be others who are going to try other approaches.