The media industry provocateur is irked that journalists (including me) take his bete noir, Barry Diller-backed Aereo, more seriously than his FilmOn.TV. But now Alki David will bring his message directly to the public. He says that he’ll start an ad campaign in the New York tri-state area to promote his streaming service with messages on TV, online, print and outdoor. His company adds that the marketing “will also be rolled out in the coming weeks in the other 30 major U.S. markets which the FilmOn service is already freely available” including Chicago, Los Angeles, Dallas, Miami, Washington DC, San Francisco and Denver. David says Boston will come online next week with other cities to be added each week “thereafter.” The first TV ad shows David “driving a red Ferrari at high speed while watching TV on a mobile phone. A second commercial featuring Mike The Situation from Jersey Shore fame will appear on local television in the coming weeks.”
A FilmOn release says that it offers “all the local Major Networks NBC CBS Fox and ABC as well as a wide range of premium US brands such as TMZ Live, Sesame Street, Nikleodeon [sic], ESPN, MSNBC and Wall Street Journal. Also celebrity driven channels including Anderson Cooper and Chelsea Handler are included. A wide selection of Latin and International content is also freely available.” The company says that it has content deals with “major providers such as the Arena Football League, Football Premiership, NCAA, IMG, Disney, NBC and many others. FilmOn also offers its own brand of content and interactive television through its Los Angeles based broadcast station KILM (BATTLECAM LIVE) which is also freely available on FilmOn.”
The business model is “based on the notion that today the consumer expects to receive content for free,” David says. “FilmOn is breaking convention but also bringing back the youth to watch TV. Additional services such as expanded DVR and HD viewing carries a premium which a smaller user-group would be willing to pay for.” The company says it generates revenue by selling pre-roll commercials and mid roll ads where it can.
David remains obsessed with Diller. The IAC chief sued last year after David created a website — BarryDriller.com — that streamed broadcast signals for free. Fox, CBS, NBC and ABC followed with a joint copyright infringement claim. (The site now appears to be down.) David says he “really tried to get friendly with [Aereo] and join forces but Barry Diller sued me over a joke! They have no content of their own and actually ask the consumer to pay for something that is already freely available.” After recently acquiring rights to a TV-streaming hardware product called Aero, David says that “Barry should quit while he’s still a little relevant and turn over Aereo.com which by rights belongs to me anyway!”