Aereo was knocked down but not out by the recent Supreme Court ruling. Now they are developing new ways to fight back.
The Cable TV Alternative Start-up was dealt a heavy blow by major TV networks and the Supreme Court
Aereo the start-up company that was offering users network programs without a cable or satellite TV subscription took quite a blow from the Supreme court last month. The court ruled that the start-up had violated copyright laws and forced them to stop broadcasting. Big broadcasting companies called this is a major victory for copyright protection, and for Aereo it seemed like the end. An idea that was reinforced when the companies CEO said he didn’t have a backup plan.
Aereo is not ready to give up just yet
In a letter to the public Aereo’s CEO Chet Kanojia told customers that things were not as bad as they seemed. The letter says that even though the Supreme Court has sent the case back to the lower courts Aereo isn’t ready to give up just yet. Kanojia says that they “have decided to pause our operations temporarily as we consult with the court and map out our next steps”. While Aereo is figuring out their next step they have promised subscribers a refund for the last month of service. This is sure to come as a relief to those who had already paid for their month of service just before the start up was shut down. Still many people would like to see the cable free company make a comeback.
Aereo issued a Call to Arms to its subscribers as a way of fighting back
It was only natural the start up would try anything that it could to convince the courts to reverse their rulings. Last week Aereo reached out to its supporters by issuing a call to arms. They asked all of their supporters to contact their local law maker to make their voices heard. The plan was to blast congress with demands that the laws be changed so Aereo could start broadcasting again. This plan unfortunately fell on deaf ears, with law makers ignoring these demands.
How Aereo works
What is Aereo?
If your not familiar with Aereo make sure you also read: The Holy Grail of Cable TV Alternatives
What can the cable free start-up do to fight back now?
Aereo has come with one last strategy to try fighting back against the big broadcasting companies. In its ruling the Supreme Court called Aereo a “cable system”, which is something the start-up feels is vital to its case. What this means is that the Supreme Court considered Aereo a cable provider similar to Time Warner. Being considered a “cable system” would allow Aereo to file for a license to operate, basically making them a cable provider. That is exactly what the company is asking for in the courts now. This a strategy that has been used by other start-up’s trying to get over copyright law hurdles in the past. These past attempts were all unsuccessful but Aereo may have a better chance. The reason for this is that Aereo is not labeling itself a cable system like similar companies have tried to do. Instead the Supreme Court was the one to give them this label which provides a little more weight to the claim.
Does Aereo have any chance of broadcasting again?
Only time will tell what the future holds for Aereo. At the moment the decision is in the hands of the lower courts who have to decide if they can be considered a “cable system” or not. Even if the lower courts agree with Aereo’s interpretation of the Supreme Court’s ruling that does not mean the fight is over. Major broadcasting companies are bound to bring the case back to the Supreme Court. Aereo has an uphill battle ahead of it but if they succeed the cable landscape in America will never be the same.