WNET v. Aereo, Inc.

Docket Number: 12-2786
Judge: Droney
Opinion Date: April 1, 2013

Two groups of plaintiffs, holders of copyrights in programs broadcast on network television, filed copyright infringement actions against Aereo. Aereo enabled its subscribers to watch broadcast television programs over the internet for a monthly fee. Plaintiffs moved for a preliminary injunction barring Aereo from transmitting programs to its subscribers while the programs were still airing, claiming that those transmissions infringed their exclusive right to publicly perform their works. The district court denied the motion and plaintiffs appealed. The court concluded that Aereo’s transmissions of unique copies of broadcast television programs created at its users’ request and transmitted while the programs were still airing on broadcast television were not “public performances” of plaintiffs’ copyrighted works under Cartoon Network LP, LLLP v. CSC Holdings, Inc. As such, plaintiffs have not demonstrated that they were likely to prevail on the merits on this claim in their copyright infringement action. Nor have they demonstrated serious questions as to the merits and a balance of hardships that tipped decidedly in their favor. Accordingly, the court affirmed the district court’s order denying plaintiffs’ motion. View “WNET v. Aereo, Inc.” on Justia Law