Court Deals Another Blow to Aereo

Aug 22, 2014  •  Post A Comment

Aereo, the television streaming service, was dealt another setback when a federal court on Thursday rejected its argument that it should be considered a cable-TV service, reports CNET.

“The shuttered company, which the Supreme Court said in June was illegally retransmitting broadcast TV over the Internet, will have to take its case to a federal district court to continue its cable-TV defense, the US Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Thursday. Aereo, a startup that operated in 11 US cities, used arrays of tiny, individual antennas to pick up free over-the-air television and then stream that programming to paying customers,” the story reports.

After its Supreme Court loss, Aereo changed its legal argument, switching to a statutory license model, which allows cable systems to retransmit copyrighted programming by paying royalty fees through the Licensing Division of the U.S. Copyright Office, the story notes. That would allow Aereo to pay for the programming, without requiring approval from the broadcasters, the piece adds.

Aereo had appealed to the Second Court of Appeals to rule on whether it was a cable company that could use statutory licensing, but the court denied that request on Thursday.

“We leave it to the district court to consider whether the issues are properly raised in these cases and, if so, to rule on the issues in the first instance,” the court said in its ruling.

Aereo declined to comment.


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