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Old April 9 2013, 01:58 PM   #1
farmkid
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Aereo-like cable, but cheaper

This article is the first I have heard of Aereo. What they do is they capture the over-the-air signal broadcast by TV stations and provide shows through the internet to their subscribers for $10/month. They don't have a license from content providers. Networks say they're stealing content, but courts so far have sided with Aereo. Fox has now suggested they may stop broadcasting their signal if this continues.

So what do you think of this? There certainly seems to be copyright violation because they are making money off of media without having any license to broadcast it. However, they're only providing what people can get for free anyway.

I'm not sure who would be the primary users of this service. Cable/satellite subscribers might switch to it because it's cheaper, but they would lose out on most of they channels currently have. They might subscribe to it in addition to what they already have as a way to get local news/sports. OTA users might use it because it would allow them to essentially have a DVR. (Side note: the article says it's not possible to pause/DVR OTA TV. Wrong, I do it all the time. It just takes a little more creativity than getting a DVR from the cable company.) From each of these groups, the only ones the broadcasters would lose money from is those who are currently cable/satellite users who would switch but I can't see many people doing that because anyone paying that much for TV instead of using an antenna is probably watching the other channels.

As someone who uses an antenna, I don't think I like this. I like what I have, and this could only hurt me by making the networks respond in a way that would make me lose content or have to pay for it. We've got a good thing going here that has worked for decades, but this could ruin it all.
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Old April 9 2013, 05:35 PM   #2
YellowSubmarine
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Re: Aereo-like cable, but cheaper

farmkid wrote: View Post
So what do you think of this? There certainly seems to be copyright violation because they are making money off of media without having any license to broadcast it.
If the courts say there isn't, there probably isn't.
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Old April 9 2013, 06:27 PM   #3
farmkid
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Re: Aereo-like cable, but cheaper

Well what I meant by "seems like" is that it looks like copyright violation. Courts have said otherwise, so until a higher court disagrees, it isn't copyright violation even though it sure looks like it.
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Old April 9 2013, 07:14 PM   #4
Yoda
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Re: Aereo-like cable, but cheaper

Well, I just hope they expand quickly enough to make a poor man's NFL Sunday Ticket viable. Not sure how long this will last in the era of the DMCA, but a man can dream. I wouldn't want to be the guy facing down the combined lawyer fury of the major networks and also NBC.
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Old April 9 2013, 08:12 PM   #5
farmkid
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Re: Aereo-like cable, but cheaper

I don't think they can offer broadcasts outside of your own area, so I don't think they can do anything like the Sunday Ticket. I think that's the key in how they are able to get around copyright laws--they only offer what is already broadcast for free in that same area. Right now, it's only available in NYC, and you have to have a valid credit card with a NYC billing address to sign up. They are expanding to other cities soon, though, so we'll see if that limitation remains.
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Old April 9 2013, 08:55 PM   #6
Yoda
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Re: Aereo-like cable, but cheaper

Yeah but the address system can always be gamed.
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Old April 10 2013, 04:47 AM   #7
not
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Re: Aereo-like cable, but cheaper

"I'm not sure who would be the primary users of this service"


Kids don't watch TV on a TV anymore but get their content on their devices. Aereo plans to expand into 22 cities but the fact is that TVs target market have left the advertisement/demographic broadcast and cable model.



I have been following the legal case and if broadcasters prevail in the third challenge, they still lose with their dying market share.
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Old April 10 2013, 05:56 AM   #8
Captrek
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Re: Aereo-like cable, but cheaper

Feels like broadcast.com all over again. I hope they don't dump another Mark Cuban on the world.
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Old April 10 2013, 06:12 AM   #9
J. Allen
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Re: Aereo-like cable, but cheaper

Interesting. While I do have DirecTV, on my Roku box I have a channel called "NowhereTV", and I get dozens of broadcast stations and programs. It's free, though you're invited to make a donation.
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Old April 10 2013, 10:48 AM   #10
BillJ
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Re: Aereo-like cable, but cheaper

Hope they're saving their pennies. Because at some point Aereo is going to lose in court and have to pay up.
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Old April 11 2013, 06:06 PM   #11
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Re: Aereo-like cable, but cheaper

Yea heard about that. If Fox becomes a pay tv channel due to it, I won't even bother to pay, since it won't be worth it. Cable already costs too much. So many different taxes and fees. It's almost not worth having anymore.

As for Aereo, they should at least pay something in regards to royalties. But as for the other companies, there should be some healthy competition . Nothing like that to help bring down prices.
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Old April 12 2013, 02:21 AM   #12
J. Allen
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Re: Aereo-like cable, but cheaper

Random_Spock wrote: View Post
Yea heard about that. If Fox becomes a pay tv channel due to it, I won't even bother to pay, since it won't be worth it. Cable already costs too much. So many different taxes and fees. It's almost not worth having anymore.

As for Aereo, they should at least pay something in regards to royalties. But as for the other companies, there should be some healthy competition . Nothing like that to help bring down prices.
Agreed. Cable prices are absurd, and they only intend on going up. This is very good for competition.
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Old April 14 2013, 05:48 AM   #13
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Re: Aereo-like cable, but cheaper

J. Allen wrote: View Post
Random_Spock wrote: View Post
Yea heard about that. If Fox becomes a pay tv channel due to it, I won't even bother to pay, since it won't be worth it. Cable already costs too much. So many different taxes and fees. It's almost not worth having anymore.

As for Aereo, they should at least pay something in regards to royalties. But as for the other companies, there should be some healthy competition . Nothing like that to help bring down prices.
Agreed. Cable prices are absurd, and they only intend on going up. This is very good for competition.
Yea, they only have one thing in mind, getting that much more in the way of money into their pockets. Something's got to put a wrench into their plans for domination of the market.
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Old April 14 2013, 06:13 AM   #14
RobertVA
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Re: Aereo-like cable, but cheaper

Lets not forget the media corporations that won't allow cable, fiber and satellite companies to carry popular channels unless the cable/fiber/satellite company also includes the media company's niche channels (Caution: this may include Trek BBS member favorites like SyFi and BBC America) in the same programming tier.

Then there are the local broadcasters who periodically demand more generous compensation for retransmission rights and pester local viewers (subscribers and non-subscribers) for weeks with pleas to demand the cable/fiber/satellite company carry their channels (and generously compensate them for it. These are the same advertiser funded channels many of the viewers can watch absolutely free with a standard antenna.

Of course the cable/fiber/satellite companies aren't going to dip into their corporate assets to cover those expenses. They and their stock holders aren't going to all that trouble to bleed their bank accounts dry. They will pass the higher costs onto the subscribers in the form of rate increases.
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Old April 14 2013, 11:13 AM   #15
Captrek
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Re: Aereo-like cable, but cheaper

RobertVA wrote: View Post
Lets not forget the media corporations that won't allow cable, fiber and satellite companies to carry popular channels unless the cable/fiber/satellite company also includes the media company's niche channels (Caution: this may include Trek BBS member favorites like SyFi and BBC America) in the same programming tier.
You can’t get the popular channel without also getting the niche channels. And you can’t get a box of Cracker Jack without also getting the toy inside. Like a niche cable channel, the toy in the Cracker Jack is worthless to most consumers, appreciated by a few and inexpensive to produce and package with the more popular product.
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