Beet Commentary: Is Aereo Decision Just Napster Déjà Vu?

By on 07/01/2014 8:56 PM @

What some thought would bring about the death of television as we know it encountered its own major setback last Wednesday when the Supreme Court reversed a lower court decision that had been in favor of Aereo. The Supreme Court’s reasoning was that the “cloud-based television antenna” that allowed subscribers to access over-the-air broadcast television was acting as a cable operator, bundling content owners’ property without actually paying any licensing rights.

“I’m kind of having déjà vu,” says Furious Minds’ CEO and Founder Ashley J. Swartz in the video commentary for Beet.TV

Swartz harkens the Supreme Court decision back to the record industry’s successful shut down of Napster in 1999.

“What’s interesting is the record industry is now dead, still after having won that battle,” Swartz says. When you fight technology instead of embrace it, the long tail of sustainable and defensible growth is usually quite difficult.”

But, Swartz says, this may create more opportunities for new companies to come in and disrupt the legacy television infrastructure.

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