Les Moonves, the CEO of CBS, was in the news again this week after threatening again to pull his network from the airwaves if Aereo is allowed to continue to rent antennas to viewers. Well, the way he put it was “If the government wants to give them permission to steal our signal, we will find another way to get them our content and get paid for it.”
Moonves was just one more voice in a series of public pleas from folks who might lose some cash if more viewers switch to free TV, and I hadn’t planned to even mention it. (Only a month ago, Moonves had said that Aereo wasn’t a threat to CBS’s bottom line no matter what happens in court.) Then I checked in on Techdirt last night, where Mike Masnick really nailed it.
Masnick wrote: “(I)f CBS is really so clueless that it thinks abandoning the free handout it was given by the US government in terms of a massive chunk of spectrum is the right way to respond to something like Aereo (which only increases the viewers of its free, over the air broadcasts) well, then by all means go for it. I’m sure plenty of others would leap at the opportunity of making use of that spectrum, either for broadcasting other content, or putting it to even better uses.”
Masnick has much more about Moonves’ blustery bluff, and you really should go read it!