8 thoughts on “Supreme Court Halts Aereo's Flight”

  1. Well, I’m not surprised given the tone of the oral arguments, but it’s still a travesty of law.

    I don’t ever agree with Scalia, but even a stopped clock is right twice a day:

    In a dissent that expressed distaste for Aereo’s business model, Justice Antonin Scalia said the service had identified a loophole in the law. “It is not the role of this court to identify and plug loopholes,” he wrote.

    Up to the oral arguments, I really did think Aereo would win, cuz they had the law on their side. But seems as if having the law on your side is not enough.

    (And I speak as someone who didn’t even want Aereo. I just thought they were clearly on the side of the law.)

  2. Yeah, seems like the decision was made on description and perception rather than the technical solution. Goes back to the question the justices raised about skirting the law and a missed opportunity by Aereo to emphasize they were within the law. It’s a bummer for sure.

  3. The court just sped up Aero’s crash and burn. Their business model would be their eventual undoing anyway.

  4. “Goes back to the question the justices raised about skirting the law and a missed opportunity by Aereo to emphasize they were within the law.”

    In retrospect, I seriously doubt Aereo’s lawyers could’ve changed the verdict. The (bizarre) line of questioning from the justices that asserted that Aereo’s technological solution was only to exploit the loophole in the law sorta sealed the deal.

    And if the majority of the court thought that successfully exploiting a loophole in the law was unlawful (!), I’m not sure what Aereo’s lawyers could’ve done. If being on the right side of the law ain’t good enough, then game over no matter what Aereo argued.

    “It’s a bummer for sure.”

    Like I say, I don’t even want Aereo, so the only bummer for me is the insane nature of the decision. Always seemed a pretty slam-dunk case in the opposite direction to me.

  5. I don’t understand how I can legally use an OTA antenna to get content, I can get a DVR to timeshift that content and hook up a sling box to placeshift that content, but rent that hardware from a location that gets a better signal than my house and all of a sudden it is illegal.

  6. Chucky, no offense, but it simply is impossible that you “don’t ever agree with Scalia,” and yet agree with his statement about loopholes. That’s a key part of his textualist judicial philosophy. He doesn’t believe in closing loopholes in the law, while Breyer (his philosophical opponent) believes that loopholes in the text that violate the spirit and intent of the legislature should be plugged. It’s the same reason that Scalia would let gun straw purchase loopholes stand, or be willing to overturn the PPACA over a drafting error.

    If you think that having the letter of the law on your side is the most important thing, then consistently you should agree with Scalia a lot. If you think that the spirit and the legislative history are most important, then you should agree with Breyer a lot.

    In reality, most of us don’t have a consistent judicial philosophy, we are all pretty results-oriented. The Supreme Court Justices, while not perfect, tend to be more consistent than the rest of us.

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