Aereo Hits ‘Pause’ on Service in Wake of Supreme Court Loss

Aereo Hits 'Pause' on Service in Wake of Supreme Court Loss

Getty Images

Chet Kanojia writes: “We have decided to pause our operations temporarily”

Aereo, the cloud-based antenna company, has suspended its service in the wake of a crushing loss in the Supreme Court this week.

Founder Chet Kanojia informed subscribers on Saturday: “We have decided to pause our operations temporarily as we consult with the court and map out our next steps. You will be able to access your cloud-based antenna and DVR only until 11:30 a.m. ET today.

A spokeswoman emphasized that the company was not shutting down, merely reassessing.

Also read: Aereo Investor Barry Diller Says Company ‘Is Over’

In a major victory for TV broadcasters, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled 6-3 Wednesday that the online TV service Aereo illegally violates their copyrights.

Broadcasters argued that Aereo's transmissions violated their copyrights, since cable companies pay a premium to rebroadcast their content. But Aereo said it was merely harnessing the power of the humble antennae on a massive scale.

Kanojia, still defiant, wrote: “The spectrum that the broadcasters use to transmit over the air programming belongs to the American public and we believe you should have a right to access that live programming whether your antenna sits on the roof of your home, on top of your television or in the cloud.”

Also read: Supreme Court Sides With Broadcasters Against Aereo

Here is Kanojia's letter to subscribers:

A Letter to Our Consumers: Standing Together for Innovation, Progress and Technology – An Update on Aereo

“The world hates change, yet it is the only thing that has brought progress.” –Charles Kettering, inventor, entrepreneur, innovator & philanthropist

A little over three years ago, our team embarked on a journey to improve the consumer television experience, using technology to create a smart, cloud-based television antenna consumers could use to access live over the air broadcast television.

On Wednesday, the United States Supreme Court reversed a lower court decision in favor of Aereo, dealing a massive setback to consumers.

As a result of that decision, our case has been returned to the lower Court. We have decided to pause our operations temporarily as we consult with the court and map out our next steps. You will be able to access your cloud-based antenna and DVR only until 11:30 a.m. ET today.

All of our users will be refunded their last paid month. If you have questions about your account, please email support@aereo.com or tweet us @AereoSupport.

The spectrum that the broadcasters use to transmit over the air programming belongs to the American public and we believe you should have a right to access that live programming whether your antenna sits on the roof of your home, on top of your television or in the cloud.

On behalf of the entire team at Aereo, thank you for the outpouring of support. It has been staggering and we are so grateful for your emails, Tweets and Facebook posts. Keep your voices loud and sign up for updates at ProtectMyAntenna.org – our journey is far from done.

Yours truly,

Chet Kanojia