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November 08, 2004

Zap2it is getting scammed?

Zap2it.com, which is one of the backbone technologies that makes open source PVR software possible, is apparently upset that some retail products are using the XMLTV service without paying for it. This technology provides the North American programming guide data that is used by practically all open source PVR projects that are around.

Here's the letter that was posted on the SageTV bulletin board:

An Open Letter to the Zap2it Labs Community:

We at Tribune Media Services and Zap2it.com have been privileged to offer a TV listings service to the open source and freeware communities so that the many innovations in electronic program guides, digital video recorders, and recommendation engines could continue to flourish. This free-of-charge service is at risk, however, due to the actions of several businesses seeking to exploit our generosity so that they can make greater profits.

When you signed up for Zap2it Labs, you agreed to a contract that states the service is available for non-commercial, personal use only. A few commercial entities have chosen to ignore these contractual terms in order to receive television listings without paying. We know who these entities are; you know who they are.

These violations must end.

If you purchased a hardware or software product that receives its television listings from Zap2it Labs' DataDirect or, indirectly, through XMLTV, you may be violating our contract. It is critical that you and your vendor abide by our contractual terms, lest everyone suffer the consequences.

If you have any questions about this issue, or suggestions for how to ameliorate the situation, please feel free to contact us at mailto:labs@zap2it.com


Jay R. Brodsky
Tribune Media Services

If this service went away, it would make it much more difficult for projects like MythTV to operate. That's hope they get this resolved without deciding to pull the plug.

(Hat Tip: Reader EP)

Posted on November 08, 2004

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