Advanced Television

Broadcasters appeal Aereo decision

July 13, 2012

By Colin Mann

A group of broadcasters has appealed a judge’s ruling against closing down Internet video service Aereo. The broadcasters claim that Aereo, which allows New York City customers to stream television channels on their computers and mobile devices, violates copyright law.

“We’re confident that on appeal Aereo will be found to be a copyright infringer,” said National Association of Broadcasters spokesman Dennis Wharton.

US District Judge Alison Nathan July 11 denied a motion from the broadcasters to shut Aereo down immediately. Although she recognised that the broadcasters were likely to suffer “irreparable harm” should Aereo continue to operate, she concluded that based on the legal precedent, the broadcasters were not likely to win their case, and that it would be inappropriate to grant their motion.

She said Aereo’s service was similar to Cablevision’s remote video recording system, which a federal appeals court ruled did not violate copyright law in a 2008 case.

Although Aereo is currently only available in New York City, Barry Diller, the service’s primary financial backer, told Bloomberg on Thursday that by the end of 2013, the company would be in most major markets.

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