Last updated: July 13, 2012 - 8:35am
Securities analyst Marci Ryvicker warned that broadcasters could lose their copyright suit against online video distributor Aereo, given the language a federal judge used in turning down the broadcasters' request for a preliminary injunction.
"While the 'heart' of this case is not over, the language was clearly more negative than we had anticipated," Ryvicker and her team at Wells Fargo say in a note to clients. The ruling relied on the 2008 remote-storage DVR ruling, in which a federal appeals court said that Cablevision's service did not violate programmers' copyright because the cable operator made each recording at the request of a single customer and the recording could only be viewed by that customer. That, according to the court, make it a private performance rather than a public performance that triggers copyright liability. Despite the legal setback, it says, the broadcasters ultimately have little to fear from Aereo. "Aereo is not a compelling product and therefore not a real threat to the TV ecosystem."
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