Verizon, Disney Announce Wide-ranging Video Deal; Interney Copyright Agreement Included

Verizon execs can breathe easier now that they officially can include ESPN and other Disney nets in their FiOS TV package. The multi-platform deal announced today covers broadcast, cable nets and internet; details below. It’s the full monty as distribution deals go. Disney gets exposure and distribution for its newer efforts like ABC News Now, ESPNU, etc., and Verizon gets a major broadcaster along with subscriber magnets ESPN and Disney. (Don’t underestimate the value of SOPAnet when it comes to making household decisions.)
As significant, it also includes a detailed agreement about illegal file-sharing: the two companies have agreed to cooperate “(consistent with the U.S. Digital Millennium Copyright Act) to help curb infringement of Disney’s copyrighted works over the Internet while at the same time appropriately safeguarding the privacy of Verizon Internet service subscribers.” Verizon will forward and track notices to subscribers suspected of illegal distribution of Disney’s copyrighted works — without identifying the subscribers to Disney — and will either provide subscriber-identifying info in response to subpoenas or terminate service after multiple notices.
Verizon chairman and CEO Ivan Seidenberg: “This is a significant step forward in the effort toward inter-industry cooperation in addressing the serious problem of copyright infringement over the Internet. At the same time, Verizon continues its commitment to protecting the privacy of Verizon subscribers and only providing identifying information about such subscribers in response to subpoenas properly issued by the courts.”

The video-broadband package includes:

— ABC Family, ABC News Now, Disney Channel, ESPN, ESPN2, ESPN Classic, ESPNEWS, ESPNU, ESPN HD, ESPN2 HD, Toon Disney and SOAPnet. ESPN Deportes and Toon Disney en Espanol will be on Verizon’s Hispanic expanded basic and Hispanic tier packages.

— Retransmission rights for all ABC owned-and-operated stations.

— a broadband portfolio with ABC News Now, Disney Connection, ESPN360, Movies.com and a newly launched broadband soap opera product.

— VOD offered to all digital customers including On Demand services from ABC Family, ABC News Now, Disney Channel, ESPN, ESPN Deportes, ESPNU, Jetix, Radio Disney TV, SOAPnet and Toon Disney.

— Buena Vista Pay Television and ESPN Pay-Per-View