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  1. Akshay Masand's Avatar

    Aereo, a streaming video startup that sells antenna subscriptions for users to stream over-the-air television shows to all iOS devices, Macs, and PCs using the Internet, will likely be shutting down soon. A recent Supreme Court ruling states the company violated federal copyright laws. It was said that the transferring of TV network’s copyrighted material goes against the exclusive right to perform publicly as the holders of the copyright. The opinion states:

    We must decide whether respondent Aereo, Inc., infringes this exclusive right by selling its subscribers a technologically complex service that allows them to watch television programs over the Internet at about the same time as the programs are broadcast over the air. We conclude that it does.
    Justices Breyer, Kennedy, Sotomayor, Ginsburg, Kagan, and Roberts joined together to write for the majority. However, Justices Alito, Scalia, and Thomas argued saying that the digital transmissions Aereo provides are not considered a ‘performance’ therefore the networks cannot complain. The networks say that the company violates the copyright directly and Justice Scalia responds by saying it:

    fails at the very outset because Aereo does not ‘perform at all. The Court manages to reach the opposite conclusion only by disregarding widely accepted rules for service-provider liability and adopting in their place an improvised standard ("looks-like-cable-TV") that will sow confusion for years to come.
    Aereo has yet to respond to the ruling, but cofounder Chet Kanojia had previously stated, "there is no plan B.” He stated back in April that If they lost the case, they would have to close the business because they don’t have an alternative.

    Source: New York Times

    Twitter: @AkshayMasand
    2014-06-25 09:38 PM