Two weeks after it saw the light for the first time, and was met with an intensive wave of criticism, and a number of technical problems, an exclusive streaming mobile application buys the exclusive rights of the National Media Authority’s historical productions that are mainly most of Egypt’s media shows until the early 2000s.
The United Company for Media Services announced on Friday signing a new protocol with the National Media Authority granting it the intellectual property of all national productions throughout its history.
The agreement comes to digitalise the content which is considered Egypt’s artistic legacy, and to document the heritage of Egypt’s art scene in past decades. With the agreement, Watch It, is to be the only official digital library of Egypt’s golden era’s shows and series. The domination of the past comes in sequence, after the company took over all the country’s private TV channels, Al-Hayat, CBC, Al-Nahar, and DMC.
Tamer Morsi, the United Company for Media Services’ CEO, stated that all international production companies are heading toward digitally owning the exclusive intellectual properties of media productions, just like Watch It, according to Al Shorouk News.
As for the head of the National Media Authority, Hussein Zain, he said that the protocol comes as part of their responsibility of saving Egypt’s media content, and helping to screen it in an updated technology.
The mobile application was abruptly launched at the beginning of Ramadan, by Egyptians Media, Egypt’s largest, most dominating media services agency, and Synergy production company, with the announcement that it will be the only platform screening 15 Ramadan series, and a number of TV shows, produced by the same entities, that will not be uploaded on YouTube. The application offered a monthly subscription for EGP 99, and an annual one for EGP 999. this comes unlike previous seasons, where producers aired their shows on YouTube right after their TV screening, making use of YouTube ads, and considering the number of watches as a success indicator. However, this season, only a few drama shows are uploaded with this option.
A few days after its launch, almost every screening website offering any of the exclusive series was blocked in Egypt, leaving audiences with only one available solution. However, the application was also met with a number of technical problems that users complained about, which led the owners to advertise that the application will return the money paid, and offer the application for free for the holy month of Ramadan.