A TV service has the right to access a private bedroom, according to the ruling by a court in Australia.
In the case of TV-show-themed drama House Of Lies, which has a 10-episode first season, the court ruled that an Australian TV network had a right to use a private TV room.
“An Australian TV operator has a legal right to obtain a private viewing space in the interest of its programming,” Justice Stephen Jones wrote in his judgment.
“The TV operator may use it to obtain programming that would otherwise not be available, and may use that space to access its own programming or for other purposes.”
The court said the use of a private living room for private viewing was not an invasion of privacy, because the room would only be used by an individual.
However, the case has prompted calls for a blanket ban on private viewing in the UK, where a similar ruling from the High Court in January was overturned on appeal.
“This is not just a legal question,” said a spokesperson for Channel 4, which owns the popular series.
“House Of Lies is not a private television program.
It is part of Channel 4’s portfolio and we have a very strict policy against private television and its use.”
The spokesperson said that it was not yet clear whether the legal case would be pursued in the US.
In a statement, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) said it was aware of the case and was assessing the legal implications.
“We will review the issue of TV viewing in Australia with our relevant regulators and if appropriate, we will take action,” it said.
“In the meantime, we urge Australians to remain vigilant and report any potential issues of privacy and security to their local police.”ABC/wires