Gale Anne Hurd Voices Opposition Against FCC

Gale Anne Hurd is one of Hollywood’s hardest working producers. In a recent USA Today opinion editorial Hurd protests FCC’S mandate to “open” set top boxes. The proposal in consideration by the FCC would allow a new threat of piracy to manifest.

The conundrum of pirated content will intensify with the open access proposal currently formulated by the FCC. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Tom Wheeler is the leading voice behind the idea. Renting set boxes from cable or satellite providers is the current model for subscribers. Wheeler’s proposal intends on changing the established content structure. The premise is to:

 “…combine cable or satellite channels with content from providers such as Netflix, Amazon, Hulu and others, all in one box and all searchable.”

Open set top boxes will open another portal in accessing pirated content. The flaws with the FCC’s “open” set-top box mandate can be best compared to Amazon’s Fire TV Stick. This device provides access to live television and streaming content on a legal-based platform. Yet, with a simple modification Amazon’s Fire TV Stick also acts as a portal for pirated content. Access to the pirated films, television episodes and paid per view content costs $39.99. In return millions of dollars are registered in lost revenue. The figures are staggering and poses a threat for television content. The open platform for piracy will cripple the industry.

Imagine full access to pirated content from the masses backed and instituted by the FCC. Gale Anne Hurd adds the following in regards to the potential rampant piracy with open set top boxes:

“…It would also allow Google — and for that matter set-top box manufacturers from all over the world, including China (where rogue boxes are being built by the millions) — to create and market applications or boxes with software that will treat legitimate and stolen material exactly the same, and could in many cases help steer consumers to piracy.”

The implementation of such an idea would prove disastrous for original television programming.

How does the above problem center on Horror, Thriller and Sci-Fi genre? Gale Anne Hurd is a producer and writer with production credits spanning decades. Hurd’s current project include AMC’s “Fear The Walking Dead”, “The Walking Dead” and SyFy’s “Hunters”.  “The Walking Dead” is the second most popular show for illegal downloads. It is understandable for Hurd to offer opposition against FCC’s open set top proposal.  Approval  of Chairman Tom Wheeler’s proposal may fuel piracy at an accelerated rate. What would the future hold for “The Walking Dead” and other Horror, Thriller and Sci-Fi themed content? 

Imagine television devoid of Horror, Thriller and Sci-Fi content. Frightening indeed.

 

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