Whether or not the nation’s highest court decides to hear the broadcasters’ case against Aereo could be determined in the next few weeks. The Supreme Court’s new 2014 calendar has Conference days set for January 10, 17 and 24. Conference days are when the Justices look over reviews and petitions — like the one ABC, CBS, Fox, NBC and several other broadcasters submitted against the Barry Diller-back streaming service on October 11. If SCOTUS decides to take on the submission and not leave it with lower courts, then a date for oral arguments in the potentially industry-changing case will be scheduled for later in the term. At the heart of their petition, the broadcasters want the High Court to review an April 1, 2013 ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals in New York that confirmed a District Court decision and rejected their request for a preliminary injunction against Aereo. Since its launch in the NYC area back in early 2012, broadcasters have repeatedly called out Aereo in the courts as conducting a blatant violation of their public performance rights. Some, like CBS’ Les Moonves, have even suggested they could make the move to cable if the Aereo situation isn’t resolved to their liking. In its December 11 response brief to the broadcasters’ petition, Aereo surprised many by welcoming the move to SCOTUS as a way of settling the various suits in various jurisdictions and markets that the broadcasters have instigated over the past two years. So now we wait to see if this Friday or the following two could take this case to the nine Justices this year.
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