"This is a case of an entrepreneur with a bright idea being sued by an industry trying to preserve the status quo."
Arlington, Va., April 21, 2014 - The following statement can be attributed to Gary Shapiro, president and CEO, Consumer Electronics Association (CEA)®, regarding oral arguments in the U.S. Supreme Court case American Broadcasting Companies Inc. v. Aereo Inc.:
"This is a case of an entrepreneur with a bright idea being sued by an industry trying to preserve the status quo. Ironically, broadcasters must give free service to the same people Aereo wants to charge. We hope, as it did with the Sony Betamax case, the Supreme Court sides with innovators and entrepreneurs rather than the industries trying to squash them.
"Most research shows as little as seven percent of American TV households rely on an antenna alone for their television programming. More and more people are now using the Internet or Web-connected devices to watch TV, and Aereo is helping drive this growing trend. If the television networks can't maintain viewership on their own merits, then they must learn to work with innovative companies like Aereo - not fight against them.
"The Sony Betamax and Cablevision cases set a precedent - in both, the Supreme Court upheld the value of embracing innovation over preserving the status quo. The court now has yet another opportunity to ensure that creative startups like Aereo can rely on the word of law, not the influence of out-of-date goliaths who would otherwise stifle innovation."
On April 4, CEA, in conjunction with the Electronic Frontier Foundation, Engine Advocacy and Public Knowledge, filed an amicus brief with the Supreme Court in support of Aereo.
The Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) is the technology trade association representing the $208 billion U.S. consumer electronics industry. More than 2,000 companies enjoy the benefits of CEA membership, including legislative advocacy, market research, technical training and education, industry promotion, standards development and the fostering of business and strategic relationships. CEA also owns and produces the International CES - The Global Stage for Innovation. All profits from CES are reinvested into CEA's industry services. Find CEA online at CE.org, DeclareInnovation.com