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(The Week)   Aereo's argument to SCOTUS: "Look, let's face it. Broadcasters are gonna get hosed one way or the other. If we don't do it, someone else will. Don't harsh our mellow, dudes"   (theweek.com) divider line 219
    More: Followup, Aereo, U.S. Supreme Court, Supreme Court  
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7776 clicks; posted to Main » on 21 Apr 2014 at 10:01 AM (13 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2014-04-21 11:08:37 AM

thirdgrader: GoldSpider: Geotpf: Imagine you are a landlord.  You own a house and rent it out.  Heck, you own several houses and rent them out.  Attached to each house is a television antenna on the roof (old-school style); the tenant hooks up their TV to it.  Nobody would argue that this is illegal.

Except the landlord isn't storing and redistributing the content, let alone charging for access to it.

What if the landlord did charge, though? For eight bucks he lets you use one of his VCRs (he has a bunch in the basement) and promises to keep the antenna in good shape and routes it to your apartment.

There's no way that's illegal.

To make the analogy perfect, the landlord has ten units and ten antennae. Aereo literally has an antenna for each user.

This is like suing VCR manufacturers. Which of course Big Cable did.


Well, if you want to make the analogy real perfect, what Aereo is doing would be akin to you calling up the landlord and paying him to tape a program for you.  But it's probably a question of scale for legality.  The landlord's primary purpose is not offering access to content, it's renting a place to live, and the VCR thing is only a few people (and probably could be construed as illegal anyway, just the same as it's technically illegal under copyright law to make a copy of a DVD movie for a friend).  Aereo's sole purpose is offering access to content for a fee, to thousands of people.

My apartment complex offers free limited basic cable (mostly OTA channels plus C-Span and the like) because getting a good OTA signal is hard.  But, they're paying the cable company for that.

The difference between Aereo and VCRs is that all the hardware is under Aereo's control at their own location.  They're exploiting a grey area in copyright law, which I suppose is why this case made it all the way to the Supreme Court.
 
2014-04-21 11:08:44 AM
I wonder what these "antenna farms" look like.  What if the channel being received is one of those low VHF ones that need a decent size antenna anyway. There's still a few of those left.
 
2014-04-21 11:09:05 AM

Theaetetus: Mind you, that was only from the 2nd Circuit, but I believe SCOTUS denied cert in that case.


Right, Aereo was essentially created as a direct result of that decision. It's a rather brilliant technological exploitation of a legal loophole, as explained very well on Scotusblog. That said, I think the Supreme Court isn't going to allow it; it's violating the spirit of the law so obviously that even if there's no  clear violation of the letter of the law, the Court is still going to strike it down.
 
2014-04-21 11:09:34 AM

Tax Boy: NutWrench: Why aren't VCR and TiVo manufacturers getting sued over this? Their devices allow people to store and "rebroadcast" content.

Ah yes, the fabled Arpanet-enabled betamax with transcoding to VT100 text animation streaming capabilities to your TRS-80.

/now with COLECOVISION media extender!


Atari400 has better graphics, although the optional cassette leaves a lot to be desired when downloading movies.

/think I still have an atari800 someplace
//just need to remember basic
 
2014-04-21 11:10:37 AM
I was an active Aereo subscriber for a few months, so I know the service very well... Reading through these threads it's obvious a lot of people don't fully understand the scope and breadth of Aereo's offerings (in other words, people think it does a lot more than it actually does). While I liked Aereo, and I want to see them win just on the grounds of me liking to see innovative technology/business models triumphing over antiquated laws, I don't think Aereo is going to win.

The whole 1 antenna + 1 recording per user is a red herring. The fact that the OTA signal is free to begin with is a red herring. The argument that you're renting infrastructure and not paying for content is also a red herring. A clever argument from Aereo's lawyers (if that's really their tact here).

I saw this analogy in the other thread and I think it makes the most sense to me:

Pandora/Spotify/Slacker all broadcast music to me for free. They're able to do this because they've gotten license agreements from the content owners (RIAA/Sony/Universal/BMG, et al) which allows them to broadcast that music in return for meeting certain conditions (payment of royalties, restrictions on how songs can be played [ie, no on-demand, no more than 6 skips per hour, etc]). They're able to continue providing this service because they charge advertisers for the ad space created between songs.

Now let's say I come along and figure out how to record these audio streams for my own private enjoyment. Honestly this is probably a violation of the EULA, but let's assume for the sake of argument that it's legally allowed. I then turn around and run a service that lets others record and access songs from my Pandora stream. Again, for each subscriber, I create an additional virtual instance and that person's recordings are only accessible to them. I charge $8 a month for this, since it takes a lot of power/bandwidth/ram to run all those virtual instances.

I'm now profiting off of content to which I neither own the copyright to nor have a license agreement for.

/I believe this is the sticking point
//IANAL
 
2014-04-21 11:10:55 AM

Rincewind53: But in aggregate, and ignoring their (admittedly very clever) technological ways around the problem, it's very clear that what they're doing is recording programs off of TV and then charging other people to watch them. They're exploiting a loophole that the Second Circuit made a few years ago, but there's no really good argument for why the loophole should exist.

Aereo is likely going to lose, as a result. Even if their technology actually fits the loophole (which it does seem like it does), the Supreme Court doesn't have to act like idiots and is allowed to call a spade a spade.


I don't know about that... The Supreme Court can't simply rewrite the copyright act as necessary to close loopholes - that's Congress' job, and is why Congress amended the Act in 1976 specifically to close a similar loophole in which a CATV system had a hilltop antenna and retransmitted the signal to homes in a sheltered valley who could not otherwise receive the broadcasts - the Fortnightly case in the late 60s.
 
2014-04-21 11:11:10 AM
Wow, I didn't realize the broadcast companies were paying shills to post troll headlines on fark.

I guess I really shouldn't be surprised, entrenched companies tend to try anything they think will take them back to the "good old days"
 
2014-04-21 11:11:47 AM

wooden_badger: I wonder what these "antenna farms" look like.  What if the channel being received is one of those low VHF ones that need a decent size antenna anyway. There's still a few of those left.


The antennas are the small things on the top. They've done a great job with miniaturization. They then stack these things like server racks.
www.crainsnewyork.com
 
2014-04-21 11:12:14 AM

wooden_badger: I wonder what these "antenna farms" look like.


cdn2.vox-cdn.com
 
2014-04-21 11:13:13 AM

Theaetetus: Rincewind53: But in aggregate, and ignoring their (admittedly very clever) technological ways around the problem, it's very clear that what they're doing is recording programs off of TV and then charging other people to watch them. They're exploiting a loophole that the Second Circuit made a few years ago, but there's no really good argument for why the loophole should exist.

Aereo is likely going to lose, as a result. Even if their technology actually fits the loophole (which it does seem like it does), the Supreme Court doesn't have to act like idiots and is allowed to call a spade a spade.

I don't know about that... The Supreme Court can't simply rewrite the copyright act as necessary to close loopholes - that's Congress' job, and is why Congress amended the Act in 1976 specifically to close a similar loophole in which a CATV system had a hilltop antenna and retransmitted the signal to homes in a sheltered valley who could not otherwise receive the broadcasts - the Fortnightly case in the late 60s.


They don't even have to go that far; they just have to tweak the definition of "performance" to exclude large-scale middleman situations like this one.
 
2014-04-21 11:15:42 AM

Rincewind53: Theaetetus: Mind you, that was only from the 2nd Circuit, but I believe SCOTUS denied cert in that case.

Right, Aereo was essentially created as a direct result of that decision. It's a rather brilliant technological exploitation of a legal loophole, as explained very well on Scotusblog. That said, I think the Supreme Court isn't going to allow it; it's violating the spirit of the law so obviously that even if there's no  clear violation of the letter of the law, the Court is still going to strike it down.


I think they'll let Aero off with what they have already done, then just rewrite the law to close the loophole.  SCOTUS let's lots of things that violate the spirit of the law through, especially involving tax code and tax shelters.
 
2014-04-21 11:15:50 AM

Enuratique: Now let's say I come along and figure out how to record these audio streams for my own private enjoyment. Honestly this is probably a violation of the EULA, but let's assume for the sake of argument that it's legally allowed. I then turn around and run a service that lets others record and access songs from my Pandora stream. Again, for each subscriber, I create an additional virtual instance and that person's recordings are only accessible to them. I charge $8 a month for this, since it takes a lot of power/bandwidth/ram to run all those virtual instances.

I'm now profiting off of content to which I neither own the copyright to nor have a license agreement for.

/I believe this is the sticking point


That's where your analogy breaks down... Recording those audio streams  is a violation of the EULA, which means you don't have licensed copies. But when Aereo puts an antenna in the air, they aren't agreeing to any EULAs or license restrictions: they're simply receiving a public broadcast. It's been well established that CBS can't come to you and demand royalty payments for your rabbit ears.
 
2014-04-21 11:17:55 AM
American Brainwashing Company
 
2014-04-21 11:19:17 AM
You'd think big business nowadays would be savvy enough to create dummy startups which preemptively secure these rulings in their favor.
 
2014-04-21 11:20:11 AM

Rincewind53: Theaetetus: Rincewind53: But in aggregate, and ignoring their (admittedly very clever) technological ways around the problem, it's very clear that what they're doing is recording programs off of TV and then charging other people to watch them. They're exploiting a loophole that the Second Circuit made a few years ago, but there's no really good argument for why the loophole should exist.

Aereo is likely going to lose, as a result. Even if their technology actually fits the loophole (which it does seem like it does), the Supreme Court doesn't have to act like idiots and is allowed to call a spade a spade.

I don't know about that... The Supreme Court can't simply rewrite the copyright act as necessary to close loopholes - that's Congress' job, and is why Congress amended the Act in 1976 specifically to close a similar loophole in which a CATV system had a hilltop antenna and retransmitted the signal to homes in a sheltered valley who could not otherwise receive the broadcasts - the Fortnightly case in the late 60s.

They don't even have to go that far; they just have to tweak the definition of "performance" to exclude large-scale middleman situations like this one.


Can't - "perform" is explicitly defined in 101. They'd have to tweak the definition of "public", which appears in this circular definition:
To perform or display a work "publicly" means-
(2) to transmit or otherwise communicate a performance or display of the work...  to the public, by means of any device or process, whether the members of the public capable of receiving the performance or display receive it in the same place or in separate places and at the same time or at different times.


But even then, tweaking that to say "the public is 'more than two people who don't know each other'" or something may have huge unintended effects. It would be better to say "Congress, get your shiat together and write a real definition."

/"publicly" means "to the public"? Gosh, legislators sure are smrt.
 
2014-04-21 11:20:17 AM
This sounds a lot like: Officer, you don't pay that girl to have sex with you.  She's a slut who will have sex with anyone who goes into the room for free.  I just charge a $500 fee to enter the room.
 
2014-04-21 11:23:18 AM

Enuratique: I was an active Aereo subscriber for a few months, so I know the service very well... Reading through these threads it's obvious a lot of people don't fully understand the scope and breadth of Aereo's offerings (in other words, people think it does a lot more than it actually does). While I liked Aereo, and I want to see them win just on the grounds of me liking to see innovative technology/business models triumphing over antiquated laws, I don't think Aereo is going to win.

The whole 1 antenna + 1 recording per user is a red herring. The fact that the OTA signal is free to begin with is a red herring. The argument that you're renting infrastructure and not paying for content is also a red herring. A clever argument from Aereo's lawyers (if that's really their tact here).

I saw this analogy in the other thread and I think it makes the most sense to me:

Pandora/Spotify/Slacker all broadcast music to me for free. They're able to do this because they've gotten license agreements from the content owners (RIAA/Sony/Universal/BMG, et al) which allows them to broadcast that music in return for meeting certain conditions (payment of royalties, restrictions on how songs can be played [ie, no on-demand, no more than 6 skips per hour, etc]). They're able to continue providing this service because they charge advertisers for the ad space created between songs.

Now let's say I come along and figure out how to record these audio streams for my own private enjoyment. Honestly this is probably a violation of the EULA, but let's assume for the sake of argument that it's legally allowed. I then turn around and run a service that lets others record and access songs from my Pandora stream. Again, for each subscriber, I create an additional virtual instance and that person's recordings are only accessible to them. I charge $8 a month for this, since it takes a lot of power/bandwidth/ram to run all those virtual instances.

I'm now profiting off of content to which I neither own the ...


Your spotify example isn't the same thing as you have to circumvent encryption in order to record it.  That's a big DCMA no-no

What you are throwing out as redhearings is the actual argument of the case.
1) Renting a physical antenna and DVR/VCR
2) Letting the renter streaming from DVR to a remote location

#1 was settled a long time ago w/ Betmax lawsuit
#2 is completely dependent on if the SCOTUS upholds the lower courts ruling on remote time shifting
 
2014-04-21 11:23:50 AM
As someone that was watching a torrented copy of GoT S4Ep03 at 10:45pm last night, I'm getting a chuckle....

I really think the Generation that are the CEO's today don't have effing clue #1 about media in the information age and how to monetize it.
Issues like this, and the fact that within minutes I can have any show or sports match I want, shows me approximately how out of touch with reality these people are, with their trillion dollar compensation packages, bonuses and golden parachutes.

Author is right, Broadcasters are the ones who are farked either way, but it's not people like this company, or people like Me doing it to them - it's they that have done it to themselves by spending all their money and effort to control a virtual monopoly instead of innovating. (RIAA , MPAA anyone?)

Can't have it both ways, crooks... but enjoy the days as they pass, because your time is at an end. As the current generations - the ones with devices and connectivity ubiquitous to their daily lives - come of age, your power and influence will fade, it already is... these are your death throws - and as we get more judges in the circuit that understand technology - your lack of understanding will come home to roost...it already is.  They have already lost, and that is why they fight so now.

All I can do is laugh...... They had this coming and even with a win in this case, they've already lost the war.

We're getting smarter, and they're standing on their laurels...

How does history show that playing out??
 
2014-04-21 11:23:57 AM

Rincewind53: wooden_badger: I wonder what these "antenna farms" look like.  What if the channel being received is one of those low VHF ones that need a decent size antenna anyway. There's still a few of those left.

The antennas are the small things on the top. They've done a great job with miniaturization. They then stack these things like server racks.
[www.crainsnewyork.com image 850x637]


Thing is, can one individual antenna in that thing pick up the channels desired, or do you need them to be in the array like that to pick up the channels? I sure as hell can't get the local FOX channel from three miles away with that. I need at least a wand if not rabbit ears. Aereo's argument may hold some water if each antenna is capable of reception, but it looks to me that you need the dime-sized antennae in an array to have reliable reception.
 
2014-04-21 11:24:11 AM

Theaetetus: Can't - "perform" is explicitly defined in 101. They'd have to tweak the definition of "public", which appears in this circular definition:
To perform or display a work "publicly" means-
(2) to transmit or otherwise communicate a performance or display of the work...  to the public, by means of any device or process, whether the members of the public capable of receiving the performance or display receive it in the same place or in separate places and at the same time or at different times.

But even then, tweaking that to say "the public is 'more than two people who don't know each other'" or something may have huge unintended effects. It would be better to say "Congress, get your shiat together and write a real definition."

/"publicly" means "to the public"? Gosh, legislators sure are smrt.


You're right, I was remembering the Scotusblog article wrong. Regardless, it'll be an interesting result.
 
2014-04-21 11:24:48 AM

stonicus: Is this really any different than the case against The Pirate Bay?


First they came for the MP3s but I did nothing because I had CDs...then they came for the MP4s but I did nothing because I use DVDs...
 
2014-04-21 11:26:02 AM

Colin O'Scopy: stonicus: Is this really any different than the case against The Pirate Bay?

First they came for the MP3s but I did nothing because I had CDs...then they came for the MP4s but I did nothing because I use DVDs...


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/First_they_came_...
 
2014-04-21 11:26:31 AM
The broadcasters just don't want to have to pay Aereo for access to allow them to measure viewership. How else will the broadcasters know how what and many Aereo customers are watching and when?
 
2014-04-21 11:26:42 AM

kittyhas1000legs: Rincewind53: wooden_badger: I wonder what these "antenna farms" look like.  What if the channel being received is one of those low VHF ones that need a decent size antenna anyway. There's still a few of those left.

The antennas are the small things on the top. They've done a great job with miniaturization. They then stack these things like server racks.
[www.crainsnewyork.com image 850x637]

Thing is, can one individual antenna in that thing pick up the channels desired, or do you need them to be in the array like that to pick up the channels? I sure as hell can't get the local FOX channel from three miles away with that. I need at least a wand if not rabbit ears. Aereo's argument may hold some water if each antenna is capable of reception, but it looks to me that you need the dime-sized antennae in an array to have reliable reception.


Allegedly each antenna is picking up each channel separately.
 
2014-04-21 11:26:59 AM
Anyone else think the article's author should have revealed his paid affiliation to network TV somewhat before the second-to-last paragraph? Possibly in an italicized note at the very top?
 
2014-04-21 11:27:26 AM

Rincewind53: Theaetetus: Mind you, that was only from the 2nd Circuit, but I believe SCOTUS denied cert in that case.

Right, Aereo was essentially created as a direct result of that decision. It's a rather brilliant technological exploitation of a legal loophole, as explained very well on Scotusblog. That said, I think the Supreme Court isn't going to allow it; it's violating the spirit of the law so obviously that even if there's no  clear violation of the letter of the law, the Court is still going to strike it down.


Scalia is pretty vehement when he speaks publicly that letter of the law trumps spirit of the law every time.

His rulings also demonstrate his belief that the richer you are the better person you are and therefore deserve to win.

I'm guessing he'll rule for the wallet guys. Which is exactly why this case is important. It's yet another nail in the coffin for the middle class.
 
2014-04-21 11:27:38 AM

wxboy: I'm not sure how a cable company typically receives a feed from the OTA broadcaster (satellite or fiber or antenna).


Typically satellite in most cases.

Difference is, your local cable company receives a single copy of the signal and makes it available to all their subscribers simultaneously. Aereo receives thousands of copies of the signal and makes each one available to at most one subscriber.
 
2014-04-21 11:30:38 AM

Hobodeluxe: solution. give the broadcasters their slice. maybe 10% distributed amongst the big 4. 2.5% each. that means Aereo charges 9 bucks a month and not 8.


You think one of the big 4 broadcast networks is going be happy with a 2.5% cut?

You think the smaller OTA broadcast stations are going to be happy with a 0% cut?
 
2014-04-21 11:30:44 AM
Scrotus.
 
2014-04-21 11:33:46 AM
On a personal scale. How is what aereo does different from you having an antenna and a slingbox.
All aereo is doing is shifting off premises and charging you to lease the equipment in their space.

The fact that they are following the letter of the laws is important and should be upheld.
 
2014-04-21 11:34:53 AM
IANAL, but how is this not the same/similar thing to Napster and other file sharing programs?  The argument that its consumer choice and they are "creating" their own broadcast seems like an equivalent to peer-to-peer file sharing, since I'm just setting up my own private link to the host.

Or is this thing just doing real-time broadcasts (so it would only emit Arrow at 8pm on Wed for example), but having every network available at once?
 
2014-04-21 11:37:13 AM

Rincewind53: kittyhas1000legs: Rincewind53: wooden_badger: I wonder what these "antenna farms" look like.  What if the channel being received is one of those low VHF ones that need a decent size antenna anyway. There's still a few of those left.

The antennas are the small things on the top. They've done a great job with miniaturization. They then stack these things like server racks.
[www.crainsnewyork.com image 850x637]

Thing is, can one individual antenna in that thing pick up the channels desired, or do you need them to be in the array like that to pick up the channels? I sure as hell can't get the local FOX channel from three miles away with that. I need at least a wand if not rabbit ears. Aereo's argument may hold some water if each antenna is capable of reception, but it looks to me that you need the dime-sized antennae in an array to have reliable reception.

Allegedly each antenna is picking up each channel separately.


That's an enormous waste of resources. Mandated by law. Just like the size of Japanese cars. Total ridiculousness.
 
2014-04-21 11:37:33 AM

Rincewind53: Except Aereo is putting thousands of spare antennas on a circuit board. So, to make your metaphor better, what if your neighbor were to cover every inch of his rooftop with antennas, and every square inch of his yard, so that there are hundreds of the things. Then he goes around to every house in the neighborhood and says "Hey, I'm willing to rent you access to my antennas for cheaper than the cable company. You should cut the cable and go with me instead."

I think we can both agree that the large-scale operation, while operating in a superficial way like the example you gave, is fundamentally different.


I actually don't see how that's fundamentally different.

All those hundreds of people could each have an antenna on their own roof, but they are willing to pay the neighbor to have their antenna on his property instead.  Why?  Because they can't get antenna reception on their own property.  In essence, their choice to get what should be free OTA broadcasts is to either pay to use their antenna on their neighbor's property, or to pay to use the cable company's antenna.  The cable company in turn only pays the broadcasters because they weren't interested in having an antenna per customer.

As to the theater versus private viewing party analogy: that comes down to the definition of private versus public use.  Previous cases have found that cloud-based DVR services were fine for the very same reasons Aereo is using it its argument: each household chooses what to record, has their own recordings that aren't shared between households, only piped into that one home on demand.  Thus private use.  Likewise, Aereo isn't making one master recording of How I Met Your Mother that for a fee they broadcast to everyone who wants to watch it ala the theater viewing party; they are making an individual recording for each household and charge to store it offsite rather than on an in home DVR.

The only innovation here is that Aereo has both the antenna and the DVR offsite, though still in the same broadcast market.
 
2014-04-21 11:39:23 AM

Caeldan: On a personal scale. How is what aereo does different from you having an antenna and a slingbox.
All aereo is doing is shifting off premises and charging you to lease the equipment in their space.

The fact that they are following the letter of the laws is important and should be upheld.


Shifting off premises and charging you to lease the equipment  changes things, that's why. It's different. You can't say "How is what X does different when all they do different is Y"? X and Y are two different situations with a  shared but not identical premise. Like, "How is Star Trek any different from Star Wars? All Star Trek did differently is set their TV show in the future, not in the  past."

An antenna and a slingbox only works for one person. While Aereo is  technically still only "one" antenna, the content providing infrastructure is totally different. If it looks like a duck, quacks like a duck, and acts like a duck, does it really matter if it's actually a highly-sophisticated duck-shaped robot programmed to perfectly mimic a duck in every single way?
 
2014-04-21 11:40:53 AM

Coming on a Bicycle: That's an enormous waste of resources. Mandated by law. Just like the size of Japanese cars. Total ridiculousness.


Well yes, because if they did it in a more efficient way it would be  obviouslyillegal. So it's not mandated by law. That's like saying that Cayman Island tax avoidance schemes are "mandated by law."
 
2014-04-21 11:41:56 AM

Coming on a Bicycle: Rincewind53: kittyhas1000legs: Rincewind53: wooden_badger: I wonder what these "antenna farms" look like.  What if the channel being received is one of those low VHF ones that need a decent size antenna anyway. There's still a few of those left.

The antennas are the small things on the top. They've done a great job with miniaturization. They then stack these things like server racks.
[www.crainsnewyork.com image 850x637]

Thing is, can one individual antenna in that thing pick up the channels desired, or do you need them to be in the array like that to pick up the channels? I sure as hell can't get the local FOX channel from three miles away with that. I need at least a wand if not rabbit ears. Aereo's argument may hold some water if each antenna is capable of reception, but it looks to me that you need the dime-sized antennae in an array to have reliable reception.

Allegedly each antenna is picking up each channel separately.

That's an enormous waste of resources. Mandated by law. Just like the size of Japanese cars. Total ridiculousness.


As it turns out, skirting a law while staying technically within its boundaries thanks to technologies that hadn't even been conceived of when the law was originally written is probably not going to result in the most efficient model.
 
2014-04-21 11:45:45 AM

Skirl Hutsenreiter: I actually don't see how that's fundamentally different.

All those hundreds of people could each have an antenna on their own roof, but they are willing to pay the neighbor to have their antenna on his property instead. Why? Because they can't get antenna reception on their own property. In essence, their choice to get what should be free OTA broadcasts is to either pay to use their antenna on their neighbor's property, or to pay to use the cable company's antenna. The cable company in turn only pays the broadcasters because they weren't interested in having an antenna per customer.


By that logic, I should be able to pay Aereo to watch the local NYC channels even though I'm in Florida.  If Aereo is legal from 10 miles away, why should 1,000 be any different?
 
2014-04-21 11:48:43 AM

Rincewind53: An antenna and a slingbox only works for one person. While Aereo is  technically still only "one" antenna, the content providing infrastructure is totally different. If it looks like a duck, quacks like a duck, and acts like a duck, does it really matter if it's actually a highly-sophisticated duck-shaped robot programmed to perfectly mimic a duck in every single way?


Yes, it does.  If being a real duck is illegal, then the robot duck isn't illegal.  So yes, it makes all the difference in the world.
 
2014-04-21 11:50:18 AM

TofuTheAlmighty: JackieRabbit: So, cannot Aereos not be considered a subscription antenna provider?

Aereo is essentially a leased antenna.

Regardless, the broadcasters will win because they have money and the Roberts' court sides with powerful interests every single time.


More ignorant USSC analysis from fark liberals. One word. KELO.
 
2014-04-21 11:52:41 AM

wxboy: Skirl Hutsenreiter: I actually don't see how that's fundamentally different.

All those hundreds of people could each have an antenna on their own roof, but they are willing to pay the neighbor to have their antenna on his property instead. Why? Because they can't get antenna reception on their own property. In essence, their choice to get what should be free OTA broadcasts is to either pay to use their antenna on their neighbor's property, or to pay to use the cable company's antenna. The cable company in turn only pays the broadcasters because they weren't interested in having an antenna per customer.

By that logic, I should be able to pay Aereo to watch the local NYC channels even though I'm in Florida.  If Aereo is legal from 10 miles away, why should 1,000 be any different?


You're not in the market covered by those channels. If Aereo were in my area, I could use them for the local ABC channel. My building is behind a hill, so I can't get that channel. It's different from being out-of-market and having 1,000 miles between you and the channel.
 
2014-04-21 11:54:21 AM

wxboy: Skirl Hutsenreiter: I actually don't see how that's fundamentally different.

All those hundreds of people could each have an antenna on their own roof, but they are willing to pay the neighbor to have their antenna on his property instead. Why? Because they can't get antenna reception on their own property. In essence, their choice to get what should be free OTA broadcasts is to either pay to use their antenna on their neighbor's property, or to pay to use the cable company's antenna. The cable company in turn only pays the broadcasters because they weren't interested in having an antenna per customer.

By that logic, I should be able to pay Aereo to watch the local NYC channels even though I'm in Florida.  If Aereo is legal from 10 miles away, why should 1,000 be any different?


You sort of can. Aereo allows you to rent out an antenna anywhere and watch from anywhere, even if you don't live in the area you're renting out the antenna for. If I wanted to watch local Boston programming, I could just rent out one of their Boston antennas and watch right now. However, I would have to lie to them on the registration form and tell them I lived in Boston, since their Terms of Use restrict viewing to your "Home Market", which the define by the residential address you give them. This restriction is yet another attempt to show that they're fitting this loophole, even though their technology would easily allow them to provide every local channel to anywhere.
 
2014-04-21 11:55:45 AM

kittyhas1000legs: wxboy: Skirl Hutsenreiter: I actually don't see how that's fundamentally different.

All those hundreds of people could each have an antenna on their own roof, but they are willing to pay the neighbor to have their antenna on his property instead. Why? Because they can't get antenna reception on their own property. In essence, their choice to get what should be free OTA broadcasts is to either pay to use their antenna on their neighbor's property, or to pay to use the cable company's antenna. The cable company in turn only pays the broadcasters because they weren't interested in having an antenna per customer.

By that logic, I should be able to pay Aereo to watch the local NYC channels even though I'm in Florida.  If Aereo is legal from 10 miles away, why should 1,000 be any different?

You're not in the market covered by those channels. If Aereo were in my area, I could use them for the local ABC channel. My building is behind a hill, so I can't get that channel. It's different from being out-of-market and having 1,000 miles between you and the channel.


See above. There's nothing  technically preventing them from providing those channels to you, it's just a "I live here" honor system from users.
 
2014-04-21 11:56:25 AM

Rincewind53: Caeldan: On a personal scale. How is what aereo does different from you having an antenna and a slingbox.
All aereo is doing is shifting off premises and charging you to lease the equipment in their space.

The fact that they are following the letter of the laws is important and should be upheld.

Shifting off premises and charging you to lease the equipment  changes things, that's why. It's different. You can't say "How is what X does different when all they do different is Y"? X and Y are two different situations with a  shared but not identical premise. Like, "How is Star Trek any different from Star Wars? All Star Trek did differently is set their TV show in the future, not in the  past."

An antenna and a slingbox only works for one person. While Aereo is  technically still only "one" antenna, the content providing infrastructure is totally different. If it looks like a duck, quacks like a duck, and acts like a duck, does it really matter if it's actually a highly-sophisticated duck-shaped robot programmed to perfectly mimic a duck in every single way?


Actually it does. Because it won't taste like a duck.

There's a valid business model here for getting OTA to people in locations where they should be able to receive it but can't due to infrastructure (ie apartment buildings).

And if the individual use case is perfectly legal, why is hiring someone else to do it for you illegal?
 
2014-04-21 11:56:57 AM

Rincewind53: Caeldan: On a personal scale. How is what aereo does different from you having an antenna and a slingbox.
All aereo is doing is shifting off premises and charging you to lease the equipment in their space.

The fact that they are following the letter of the laws is important and should be upheld.

Shifting off premises and charging you to lease the equipment  changes things, that's why. It's different. You can't say "How is what X does different when all they do different is Y"? X and Y are two different situations with a  shared but not identical premise. Like, "How is Star Trek any different from Star Wars? All Star Trek did differently is set their TV show in the future, not in the  past."

An antenna and a slingbox only works for one person. While Aereo is  technically still only "one" antenna, the content providing infrastructure is totally different. If it looks like a duck, quacks like a duck, and acts like a duck, does it really matter if it's actually a highly-sophisticated duck-shaped robot programmed to perfectly mimic a duck in every single way?


No it does not, unless they squash the lower courts ruling.  Remote streaming from a DVR is legal as long as the recording itself was legal.

Simply because you rented a DVR rather than bought it, doesn't mean you get a whole different set of legal restrictions on what you can record.   Otherwise every god damn rent to own place, cable company, satellite company and anyone else who rents out VCR/DVR committed copy right infringement for the last 30 years
 
2014-04-21 11:58:47 AM

ShadowKamui: Rincewind53: Caeldan: On a personal scale. How is what aereo does different from you having an antenna and a slingbox.
All aereo is doing is shifting off premises and charging you to lease the equipment in their space.

The fact that they are following the letter of the laws is important and should be upheld.

Shifting off premises and charging you to lease the equipment  changes things, that's why. It's different. You can't say "How is what X does different when all they do different is Y"? X and Y are two different situations with a  shared but not identical premise. Like, "How is Star Trek any different from Star Wars? All Star Trek did differently is set their TV show in the future, not in the  past."

An antenna and a slingbox only works for one person. While Aereo is  technically still only "one" antenna, the content providing infrastructure is totally different. If it looks like a duck, quacks like a duck, and acts like a duck, does it really matter if it's actually a highly-sophisticated duck-shaped robot programmed to perfectly mimic a duck in every single way?

No it does not, unless they squash the lower courts ruling.  Remote streaming from a DVR is legal as long as the recording itself was legal.

Simply because you rented a DVR rather than bought it, doesn't mean you get a whole different set of legal restrictions on what you can record.   Otherwise every god damn rent to own place, cable company, satellite company and anyone else who rents out VCR/DVR committed copy right infringement for the last 30 years


Yeah, but when the "rental" of the antenna is somewhat of a fiction, it gets murkier.
 
2014-04-21 11:59:37 AM

Hobodeluxe: Necronic: For the life of me I can't imagine how Aereo can win this argument.   The ramifications of a ruling in their favor would seriously cripple OTA ad revenue.  That said I hope they win.

why? the ads are reaching more homes not less.


Actually, in theory it's a net zero change.  Aereo isn't expanding the geagraphic broadcast area.  What they are doing is providing better reception and functionality for people who would otherwise not be able to receive due to other reasons.  The remote DVR functionality is just a bonus.
 
2014-04-21 12:03:08 PM

MyRandomName: TofuTheAlmighty: JackieRabbit: So, cannot Aereos not be considered a subscription antenna provider?

Aereo is essentially a leased antenna.

Regardless, the broadcasters will win because they have money and the Roberts' court sides with powerful interests every single time.

More ignorant USSC analysis from fark liberals. One word. KELO.


So a developer convinces a city to exercise eminent domain to take land for the developer to use for "economic development"  is somehow not the Roberts court siding with powerful interests, or are we talking about a different Kelo?
 
2014-04-21 12:03:34 PM

Rincewind53: ShadowKamui: Rincewind53: Caeldan: On a personal scale. How is what aereo does different from you having an antenna and a slingbox.
All aereo is doing is shifting off premises and charging you to lease the equipment in their space.

The fact that they are following the letter of the laws is important and should be upheld.

Shifting off premises and charging you to lease the equipment  changes things, that's why. It's different. You can't say "How is what X does different when all they do different is Y"? X and Y are two different situations with a  shared but not identical premise. Like, "How is Star Trek any different from Star Wars? All Star Trek did differently is set their TV show in the future, not in the  past."

An antenna and a slingbox only works for one person. While Aereo is  technically still only "one" antenna, the content providing infrastructure is totally different. If it looks like a duck, quacks like a duck, and acts like a duck, does it really matter if it's actually a highly-sophisticated duck-shaped robot programmed to perfectly mimic a duck in every single way?

No it does not, unless they squash the lower courts ruling.  Remote streaming from a DVR is legal as long as the recording itself was legal.

Simply because you rented a DVR rather than bought it, doesn't mean you get a whole different set of legal restrictions on what you can record.   Otherwise every god damn rent to own place, cable company, satellite company and anyone else who rents out VCR/DVR committed copy right infringement for the last 30 years

Yeah, but when the "rental" of the antenna is somewhat of a fiction, it gets murkier.


What fiction, there's an actual antenna physically on the circuit board

There is no law regulating how small antennas are legally allowed to be
 
2014-04-21 12:04:07 PM
Ah, the Future™ and it's coat tail game.  Break what's breakable, break what's fixable and let somebody else do your work for you.
 
2014-04-21 12:04:35 PM

blindio: MyRandomName: TofuTheAlmighty: JackieRabbit: So, cannot Aereos not be considered a subscription antenna provider?

Aereo is essentially a leased antenna.

Regardless, the broadcasters will win because they have money and the Roberts' court sides with powerful interests every single time.

More ignorant USSC analysis from fark liberals. One word. KELO.

So a developer convinces a city to exercise eminent domain to take land for the developer to use for "economic development"  is somehow not the Roberts court siding with powerful interests, or are we talking about a different Kelo?

Kelo

 was a product of the liberals on the court, is what he's talking about. The conservatives unanimously opposed it.
 
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