Supreme Court to hear Aereo case on broadcasters’ digital streaming rights

KWIKA partner Jonathan Steinsapir was quoted by Variety in Ted Johnson’s article on the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to hear the Aereo case involving television broadcasters’ challenge to digital streaming services that the broadcasters say are violating their copyrights.

Several months ago, Jonathan had predicted that because of disparate court rulings in several lawsuits involving the streaming services, the Supreme Court was likely to weigh in to settle the issue.  One of the key appellate rulings came from the Second Circuit Court of Appeals in 2008 when it found that Cablevision was not violating copyright law when it offered a remote DVR.  Studios, of course, disagreed and realize that overturning the decision is critical to their cause.

Jonathan comments on the Cablevision decision:  “I think there is a feeling that it was too focused on the form [of the technology] rather than the substance.”

There’s a lot at stake for the broadcasters in seeking a ruling from the Supreme Court, but Jonathan believes it’s a risk they have to take.

For all the details, read the Full Article, including Jonathan’s comments in the last three paragraphs.