Unfortunately for all Aereo users in Denver and Salt Lake City, the company’s services are no longer available, following a decision taken by the US District Court of Utah.Back on February 20, the court granted the company’s opponents, TV broadcasters, a preliminary injunction. Now, however, the service is getting shut down after another panel of judges denied Aereo’s request to pause the injunction while it appeals the case.
The federal court decided that Aereo didn’t really make a strong case for itself. The judges noted that the online streaming company didn’t really convince them that it is likely to succeed in its appeal. “Nor has Aereo demonstrated that the other factors weight in its favor,” the judges said.
This means that the company is losing an important slice of the audience it has worked hard to build, fighting legal battle after legal battle against TV broadcasters who consider that Aereo should pay them for the right to broadcast their content over antennas via the Internet.
“We are very sorry for the effect that this decision has on you and we look forward to presenting our case to the U.S. Supreme Court and ultimately restoring your ability to use Aereo. In the meantime, we are issuing a full refund for the current month to you, our customers in Salt Lake City and Denver. We commit to letting you know as soon as we have more information about the future of Aereo in your market,” said Chet Kanojia, Aereo CEO.
Aereo has been having a lot of legal issues as it believes it manages to circumvent copyright law by using tiny antennas which receive the over-the-air broadcasts and then transmit them to each customer.
Major TV networks, such as CBS, ABC, NBC and Fox don’t see things like this and have filed lawsuits to get Aereo to pay copyrights.
The case is, in fact, awaiting a final decision at the Supreme Court. The final confrontation is scheduled to take place in April and it could change the way content is used over the Internet in the United States.
If the Supreme Court rules in favor of Aereo, more similar services could soon make their way on the market and use the decision to shake off any possible lawsuits.
If things go the other way, then the company could face some major problems, including when it comes to expanding to new cities.