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Could The Aereo Case Change TV Forever?


A U.S. Supreme Court case pitting a spunky media startup against America’s broadcast giants is being closely watched by those in the television industry.The nation's top court is expected to rule this summer on the fate of Aereo, a company that pulls network TV broadcasts off the airwaves and streams them to online users for a monthly fee.

Justices heard oral arguments last week on behalf of Aero and the nation’s major broadcasters, including CBS, ABC, NBC and Fox.

The broadcast bigs argue that Aereo is infringing on their copyright by streaming free, over-the-air television and sending it to subscribers over the Internet.

Aereo’s supporters say shutting down the Internet streaming service before it’s had a chance to fully develop could have a chilling effect on new technology and capitalism itself.

How then will the court rule, and can it both protect copyright law while also allowing innovators to innovate?

Richard Vermut, registered patent attorney and intellectual property law expert with Jacksonville’s Rogers Towers law firm joined Melissa Ross for analysis on the Aereo case.

You can follow Melissa Ross on Twitter @MelissainJax.

Melissa Ross joined WJCT in 2009 with 20 years of experience in broadcasting, including stints in Cincinnati, Chicago, Orlando and Jacksonville. During her career as a television and radio news anchor and reporter, Melissa has won four regional Emmys for news and feature reporting.