If you’ve been keeping up with the times, you know that Aereo is a service that up until recently was rebroadcasting over the air signals via the internet so that people could cut the cord with their cable companies and cut their bill simultaneously.
Their business model was based off of the fact that anyone can legally receive the over the air signals and use them at home for free, so they assigned each user their own dime-sized antenna and rebroadcast the signal online, for the user to watch their television stations. Unfortunately for them, the content providers didn’t agree that their business strategy was legal and ultimately neither did the Supreme Court.
What’s Next For Aereo?
Well, many people have been speculating that this is the end for Aereo, but according to recent reports, they aren’t even close to giving up.
In their entire case in the Supreme Court, Aereo was arguing that they weren’t a cable provider and therefore weren’t subject to the same content licensing limitations that a normal cable provider would have. The Supreme Court wasn’t convinced, with Justice Sonia Sotomayor saying:
But that statement was the basis for Aereo’s lawyer’s new argument; if Aereo is indeed a cable company, they should be applicable to the compulsory license. In other words, they have a legal right to negotiate a fee with the content providers under the stipulation that they are a cable provider, which the Supreme Court seems to have already determined for them.
This is apparently an argument that fellow online service FilmOn has been trying to make for years, according to a Forbes report, but they haven’t made much headway due to the fact that they were unable to convince anyone that they should be considered a cable provider. Considering FilmOn has a very similar business model to Aereo with regards to their content delivery, it would seem that they now have more ground to stand on.
Aereo is still attempting to garner support for their original argument that they aren’t a cable company by insisting that users and supporters visit their “protectmyantenna.org” support site, encouraging visitors to write to their local congressmen/women telling them that the Supreme Court was wrong.
At this point we will just have to wait and see where this takes Aereo and their supporters, but one thing is for sure, they may have lost the battle but they’re not giving up the war.