Welcome!

Blog Feed Post

Aereo: It’s Over Now

 

Aereo

After months of debate and speculation, the U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday ruled against internet TV service Aereo in a 6-3 decision. The decision was a win for broadcasters that argued Aereo violated their copyright. Even though lesser courts had sided with Aereo, the Supreme Court saw it differently, effectively killing Aereo (at least in its current form).

“It’s over now,” said Barry Diller, whose company IAC led a $20.5 million funding for Aereo in 2012. Diller said Aereo “did try” but has said in the past that there is “no Plan B” if the Supreme Court rules against Aereo.

21st Century Fox said the ruling was “a win for consumers that affirms important copyright protections.” Aereo’s founder and CEO Chet Kanojia said the ruling is “a massive setback for the American consumer” and that it sends a “chilling message to the technology industry.” Aereo says it will continue to fight, but the definitive ruling leaves them with little room to operate.

My good friend, Gary Shapiro, CEO of the Consumer Electronics Association, wrote that the ruling “is a disappointment for startups, consumers and proponents of technological progress” as “more and more of us are demanding the ability to view TV programming on our own tablets and smartphones, not just our TVs.”

The Supreme Court’s ruling directly affected a very small slice of the current TV landscape. Aereo, which launched in 2012 in NYC, is only available in 13 cities and only has about 100,000 subscribers. However, its ramifications for the future are much, much greater – especially considering that in 36 months, more people will be watching primetime television programming online than on broadcast TV. This ruling delays the inevitable – and helps broadcasters keep their heads in the sand.

What the Ruling Means for Broadcasters

The Supreme Court’s ruling against Aereo helps keep the status quo for broadcasters and major networks – which is exactly what they wanted. Major networks were threatening to pull their stations off the air and move to subscription-only if Aereo had won – they said Aereo would create a blueprint that would eventually let cable providers stop paying retransmission fees. (They were right about that specific point.)

The ruling is also a win for the NFL and MLB, both of which said Aereo exploited their copyrighted telecasts and both had threatened to move their games to cable if Aereo was deemed legal.

Les Moonves, CEO of CBS, says the ruling means broadcasters can stay in business: “We will continue to do the same high-quality, premium programming that we’ve done and we will deliver it. This is a pro-consumer thing.”

What the Ruling Means for You

Even if you weren’t an Aereo subscriber, the ruling limits your TV options – and brings into question other cloud-based products you may be using.

Aereo aimed to disrupt cable. Diller said Aereo offered an “alternative to the bundle” that consumers are forced to accept from cable providers.

“It’s not a big [financial] loss for us, but I do believe blocking this technology is a big loss for consumers,” he said. “I salute Chet Kanojia and his band of Aereo’lers for fighting the good fight.”

The ruling is a blow for cord-cutters – both the ones who have already given up on cable and the ones who planned to do so in the near future. It eliminates an inexpensive option to get live TV on their computers, alongside other subscription services like Netflix and Hulu Plus.

A sea change is coming in the broadcast world. Consumers are unhappy with the expensive (and restrictive) subscription models cable and satellite providers are offering. The most recent yearly survey from Temkin Group found support for all of the largest pay TV providers had fallen in the past year. The survey also showed that these pay TV providers were the second worst in customer satisfaction across the 43 industries; the only companies that fared worse were internet service providers.

As Gary Shapiro wrote, the ruling also means that “the migration away from local programming in favor of new alternatives offered by HBO, Netflix, Amazon, YouTube and other innovators in the content and delivery space will continue.” Our expectation of TV is WiWWiWWiW (What I want, When I want, Where I want). Aereo offered broadcast TV that fit that model; traditional broadcasters do not.

What the Ruling Means for the Rest of the Tech World

The bigger fear is that a ruling against Aereo could disrupt and endanger cloud computing – where storing videos and other content on remote servers is the name of the game. Justice Stephen Breyer said the ruling should not affect cloud-based content services or companies (like Google, Microsoft or Dropbox), but that could still be a future battleground.

Could these services such as Box, Dropbox and Google Drive, be next on the chopping block? The types of services that let you stream copyrighted materials stored on a server – like music, books and movies – in exactly the same manner as the technology Aereo was using. Aereo is afraid of these consequences – that’s the “chilling message” Kanojia spoke about.

“We know what the Supreme Court intends to do, which is to say [Aereo] is illegal and nothing else, at least presumptively, is,” said Jessica Litman, a professor at the University of Michigan’s law school. However, “there’s a bunch of ambiguity in the attempted carve-out of cloud storage services.”

The Future of Aereo and TV

Aereo doesn’t have the revenue to pay the retransmission fees major broadcast networks do. It also doesn’t have the money to begin an expensive legal battle. It’s likely this is the end of the road for Aereo, unless it completely re-works its business model – which seems antithetical to the basis for the company.

“If broadcasters won’t adapt to what we as viewers want,” writes Gary Shapiro, “they will continue to face challenges from disruptive innovators like Aereo.” Let’s hope so. I would hate to think that this ruling inhibits innovation in any way, but only time will tell.

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By Shelly Palmer

Shelly Palmer is the host of Fox Television’s "Shelly Palmer Digital Living" television show about living and working in a digital world. He is Fox 5′s (WNYW-TV New York) Tech Expert and the host of United Stations Radio Network’s, MediaBytes, a daily syndicated radio report that features insightful commentary and a unique insiders take on the biggest stories in technology, media, and entertainment.

Latest Stories
SYS-CON Events announced today that Juniper Networks (NYSE: JNPR), an industry leader in automated, scalable and secure networks, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Juniper Networks challenges the status quo with products, solutions and services that transform the economics of networking. The company co-innovates with customers and partners to deliver automated, scalable and secure network...
Cognitive Computing is becoming the foundation for a new generation of solutions that have the potential to transform business. Unlike traditional approaches to building solutions, a cognitive computing approach allows the data to help determine the way applications are designed. This contrasts with conventional software development that begins with defining logic based on the current way a business operates. In her session at 18th Cloud Expo, Judith S. Hurwitz, President and CEO of Hurwitz & ...
Everyone wants to use containers, but monitoring containers is hard. New ephemeral architecture introduces new challenges in how monitoring tools need to monitor and visualize containers, so your team can make sense of everything. In his session at @DevOpsSummit, David Gildeh, co-founder and CEO of Outlyer, will go through the challenges and show there is light at the end of the tunnel if you use the right tools and understand what you need to be monitoring to successfully use containers in your...
The explosion of new web/cloud/IoT-based applications and the data they generate are transforming our world right before our eyes. In this rush to adopt these new technologies, organizations are often ignoring fundamental questions concerning who owns the data and failing to ask for permission to conduct invasive surveillance of their customers. Organizations that are not transparent about how their systems gather data telemetry without offering shared data ownership risk product rejection, regu...
@GonzalezCarmen has been ranked the Number One Influencer and @ThingsExpo has been named the Number One Brand in the “M2M 2016: Top 100 Influencers and Brands” by Analytic. Onalytica analyzed tweets over the last 6 months mentioning the keywords M2M OR “Machine to Machine.” They then identified the top 100 most influential brands and individuals leading the discussion on Twitter.
Grape Up is a software company, specialized in cloud native application development and professional services related to Cloud Foundry PaaS. With five expert teams that operate in various sectors of the market across the USA and Europe, we work with a variety of customers from emerging startups to Fortune 1000 companies.
Financial Technology has become a topic of intense interest throughout the cloud developer and enterprise IT communities. Accordingly, attendees at the upcoming 20th Cloud Expo at the Javits Center in New York, June 6-8, 2017, will find fresh new content in a new track called FinTech.
New competitors, disruptive technologies, and growing expectations are pushing every business to both adopt and deliver new digital services. This ‘Digital Transformation’ demands rapid delivery and continuous iteration of new competitive services via multiple channels, which in turn demands new service delivery techniques – including DevOps. In this power panel at @DevOpsSummit 20th Cloud Expo, moderated by DevOps Conference Co-Chair Andi Mann, panelists will examine how DevOps helps to meet th...
With major technology companies and startups seriously embracing Cloud strategies, now is the perfect time to attend @CloudExpo | @ThingsExpo, June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY and October 31 - November 2, 2017, Santa Clara Convention Center, CA. Learn what is going on, contribute to the discussions, and ensure that your enterprise is on the right path to Digital Transformation.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Hitachi, the leading provider the Internet of Things and Digital Transformation, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Hitachi Data Systems, a wholly owned subsidiary of Hitachi, Ltd., offers an integrated portfolio of services and solutions that enable digital transformation through enhanced data management, governance, mobility and analytics. We help globa...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Interoute, owner-operator of one of Europe's largest networks and a global cloud services platform, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 20th Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017 at the Javits Center in New York, New York. Interoute is the owner-operator of one of Europe's largest networks and a global cloud services platform which encompasses 12 data centers, 14 virtual data centers and 31 colocation centers, with connections to 195 add...
@DevOpsSummit at Cloud taking place June 6-8, 2017, at Javits Center, New York City, is co-located with the 20th International Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The widespread success of cloud computing is driving the DevOps revolution in enterprise IT. Now as never before, development teams must communicate and collaborate in a dynamic, 24/7/365 environment. There is no time to wait for long developm...
The age of Digital Disruption is evolving into the next era – Digital Cohesion, an age in which applications securely self-assemble and deliver predictive services that continuously adapt to user behavior. Information from devices, sensors and applications around us will drive services seamlessly across mobile and fixed devices/infrastructure. This evolution is happening now in software defined services and secure networking. Four key drivers – Performance, Economics, Interoperability and Trust ...
Blockchain is a shared, secure record of exchange that establishes trust, accountability and transparency across supply chain networks. Supported by the Linux Foundation's open source, open-standards based Hyperledger Project, Blockchain has the potential to improve regulatory compliance, reduce cost and time for product recall as well as advance trade. Are you curious about Blockchain and how it can provide you with new opportunities for innovation and growth? In her session at 20th Cloud Exp...
Five years ago development was seen as a dead-end career, now it’s anything but – with an explosion in mobile and IoT initiatives increasing the demand for skilled engineers. But apart from having a ready supply of great coders, what constitutes true ‘DevOps Royalty’? It’ll be the ability to craft resilient architectures, supportability, security everywhere across the software lifecycle. In his keynote at @DevOpsSummit at 20th Cloud Expo, Jeffrey Scheaffer, GM and SVP, Continuous Delivery Busin...