Want Netflix? Networks say it's not legit

JESS MCALLEN
Last updated 21:08 05/08/2014

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Breaking Bad
BREAKING BAD: Is it totally wicked to access the shows you want via a backdoor sign up technique with Slingshot?

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All major New Zealand TV networks have now banned ads for Slingshot's new backdoor streaming service. 

Today TV 3 and TVNZ followed Sky TV's lead in boycotting the internet provider's latest ads that promote a backdoor service that allows customers to bypass country blocks and sign up to overseas streaming sites like Netflix and Hulu.

These services are not supposed to be available in New Zealand and have prompted TV networks to take action. 

Mediaworks, which owns TV3 and Channel 4, released a statement this afternoon saying it had been advised Slingshot's development to Global Mode could be a breach of copyright and, as a result, advertising that presented it as legal was misleading. 

The ads in question feature a reference to Global Mode, a free service provided by Slingshot that lets customers bypass country blocks and sign up to overseas online services such as Netflix, which are not supposed to be offered in New Zealand.

Yesterday Slingshot general manager, Taryn Hamilton, said Sky's ban was "unjustified and petty" and smacked of protectionism and censorship. 

However, Sky TV spokeswoman Kirsty Way, said Global Mode was a way of illegitimately accessing Netflix which "did not pay for content rights in this territory".

"We are a business that pays people who create television so we are against any form of piracy or the undermining of intellectual property rights," she said. 

Hamilton said Global Mode exists because Kiwis want to access quality streaming video at a good price.

"When and if local companies manage to finally crack that, then there will be no need for the service. But, until that time, people will use services like Global Mode so that they can see decent TV without having to get a second mortgage," he said

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