Saturday, September 25, 2021

ANALYST ADVISES BROADCASTERS: PREPARE FOR LOSS IN AEREO CASE

April 1, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

BTIG analyst Richard Greenfield has advised broadcasters that they should prepare for a likely U.S. Supreme Court decision in favor of Aereo, the company that captures the signals of broadcast TV stations with tiny antennas and makes them available to subscribers via the Internet. Greenfield appears particularly impressed by the argument made in the brief that Aereo filed with the high court, responding to claims by broadcasters that their system, like cable, constitutes a public performance, not a private one. But Greenfield observes that the Aereo system requires intervention by the individual subscribers — that nothing is sent directly to them without their request. Even the “Watch Now” feature of the Aereo system, he notes, “saves the content for the duration of the program from the moment the user instructs the system to begin recording, enabling the subscriber to pause and rewind what they are watching.” Greenfield asks, “How can Aereo be liable for direct copyright infringement if its system does nothing on its own, without the explicit physical instruction of the subscriber?”