After a short reprieve, Aereo’s service in Utah and Colorado shut down this morning at 10. Yesterday, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit refused to overturn a preliminary injunction against Aereo granted two weeks ago by a Utah District Court Judge Dale Kimball. With that last appeal exhausted, Aereo was left with little choice but to stop serving customers within the Tenth Circuit.
In an email to affected subscribers, Aereo founder Chet Kanojia wrote, “Consumers have a fundamental right to watch over-the-air broadcast television via a modern antenna and to record copies for their personal use. The Copyright Act provides no justification to curtail that right simply because the consumer is using modern, remotely located equipment.” As Kanojia has repeatedly said elsewhere, the case boils down to the length of the wire from the antenna to the viewer. (An edited version of that subscriber note now greets visitors to Aereo’s Denver home page.)
The subscriber note continued, “We are unwavering in our belief that Aereo’s technology falls squarely within the law and we look forward to continuing to serve you.” If we all get lucky and the US Supreme Court confirms Aereo’s right to stream OTA TV, Denver viewers might be able to watch it again this summer. I’m keeping my fingers crossed.