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Tech Report: Aereo Streaming TV Service Wins Court Ruling

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Aereo

(Aereo)

LarryMagid01-228 Larry Magid
Larry Magid is a technology journalist and an Internet safe...
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SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS)— A company that let’s people record and stream television programming to their mobile devices has won a court ruling against companies trying to shut it down. It should be mentioned that KCBS’ parent company, CBS, was one of the companies suing.

The company is called Aereo and it only works right now in New York City, even though it broadcasts over the internet. They are expanding to other cities. But for now, their facility in Brooklyn has thousands of tiny little antennas (television antennas that are smaller than a fingernail) and each customer has an antennae dedicated to them.

Basically they allow broadcast television to be streamed onto your computer, iPhone or any mobile device for that matter. They are bypassing the network’s restrictions and are pretty much saying, ‘hey we picked it up over the air on an antennae and we’re providing it to users’.

Naturally, the networks want to control things and that’s where the lawsuits are coming from. It’s a continuing theme of a technological grey area where it isn’t quite clear as to who owns what. This type of lawsuit couldn’t have even happened until a few years ago.

Cable and satellite TV all have carriage agreements with the broadcasters. These new guys figure that since they have found a loophole, so to speak, that they can avoid the carriage fee.

Now, the courts aren’t saying that Aereo is necessarily right, but they are saying that the networks don’t have sufficient cause right now to shut them down. We’ll be covering this in the future, where it will eventually be decided by a court.

(Copyright 2013 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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