Aereo breaches copyright according to US supreme court

The united states supreme court has ruled that online streaming service, Aereo, is in breach of the copyright of broadcasters.

Aereo is an online streaming service which allowed users to view live streams of over-the-air television on Internet connected devices and was launched in 2012. It since received a good response from users but was challenged by US broadcasters who earn billions of dollars from transmission consent fees from pay-TV service providers.

The case has since gone to court and was ruled last week, in a majority ruling that Aereo 'performs works publicly,' ruling that it is no different to a cable company. This has, reversed a previous judgement from the Court of Appeals and means that Aereo could now face more legal action from other companies.

When asked about the case before the ruling was put in place, the start-up company claimed it had 'no plan B' should the ruling go against them and that is may be a case of 'game over' for the service.

In a statement, Chet Kanojia, the founder and chief executive of Aereo, described the decision as “a massive setback for the American consumer” and said it “sends a chilling message to the technology industry”.

“We are disappointed in the outcome, but our work is not done,” he said. “We will continue to fight for our consumers and fight to create innovative technologies that have a meaningful and positive impact on our world.”

The company's website now displays a letter from Kanojia stating that they have "decided to pause our operations temporarily as we consult with the court and map out our next steps."

We would love to hear what you think, is this a just ruling on the streaming service or have they been acting in the 'same way as a cable company?'

Send us your thoughts via Twitter @DigitalTVGroup

DTG Staff  |  02.07.2014

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