A Better Mousetrap for Web Video?
The genius behind Aereo’s victory in a court decision that said, at least for now, that it does not violate copyright law, lies in the fact that it uses the public airwaves to originate its delivery of broadcasted content.
The loophole exploited here by Barry Diller’s firm, InterActiveCorp (IAC), is that they are doing neither a “retransmission,” nor a “public performance” of the broadcasters’ intellectual property. Instead, they are sending the data to a subscriber, and therefore, this is a private performance of the work.
CNN explained it well here back in April.
For now this is a very clever, and very local test of the intent and language of the Federal Communications Act. Touché Monsieur Diller, but keep in mind that what you’re offering for $144 per year, is capability anyone can get for a one time cost of about $20 for a digital antenna.
Underlying question: Who would pay 12$ a month to get local channels which are already available for basically free?
They’ve never known of TV without cable, or a home without a computer. If you spoke the words “public airwaves” to these youngsters, they would have no idea what you are talking about.