Aereo? Is that some sort of new air-conditioner?
Aereo was a fairly recent company that offered streaming and recording TV at a very low cost. The company took programs already being broadcasted, re-transmitted them to customers through personal antennas and utilized cloud technology to store recordings. That was quite the mouthful so let's break it down. TV programs are broadcast over "free" airwaves that the public owns. However cable pays broadcasters a fee in order to retransmit programs and add them to the 1000+ channels most of us probably have. Aereo wasn't going to pay this re-transmission fee, they were just going to take programs and re-transmit them. This did not jive well with broadcasters.
Why The Broadcasters Can't Turn Their Frown Upside Down.
According to the Copyright Laws Aereo is violating two, count em, two principals. The first, which was previously mentioned is the re-transmission fee. The second is the "Exclusive Rights" claus in the copyright act. This right is exclusively to “perform [content] publicly”. This basically means they have the rights to broadcast their content without anyone ripping them off.
Well my dears, if Aereo was deemed legal, technically Cable companies wouldn't have to pay re-transmission fee's anymore. This could possibly put Broadcasters out of business, and with media being a huge part of the U.S. economy, I don't think shutting down major revenue generating companies would be a smart idea. Also, if Aereo was deemed legal the idea of "exclusivity" would be questioned. Who owned content once uploaded? Even if it was copyrighted, could it be re-transmitted for free? What about pirating. Trust me, my head is spinning too.
Why You Should Care. (Because you should)
This company was promising people super low (about $4-$8 a month) costs for streaming TV. This appeals extremely to my technology addicted generation. We no longer sit down in front of a TV at night, we stream. We watch TV and movies on the subway, on planes, during our work breaks. We no longer set aside time for TV, we are simply to busy, so we watch on the go. This is where Aereo came it. I have a feeling other companies will pop up to try to cater to my generations need for cheaper, more instant, and mobile technology.
The Cloud? Is it still a mystery? Yes.
I am no technology expert, so you may want to google, "what is the cloud?" Well I will attempt to explain it as simply as possible. It is basically this imaginary space where people can upload, store and share content.
I hope you enjoyed this little current events piece. Everything here was researched and put together by moi. Much was taken form a repost I did for a Mass Communications class. For more information head to the Aereo website or any of the recent articles about the case.
Happy Uploading Loves. XoXo