Damon Root on the Rise and Fall of Aereo

The Supreme Court squashes one possible future of television.


Jonathan Ernst/Reuters/Newscom

The company was called Aereo and its product was "a new species of antenna." "If you have this and you have Netflix, you absolutely have the ability to not have a standard cable subscription," Chet Kanojia, Aereo's founder and chief executive, told The New York Times when the company opened for business in early 2012.

That was the key selling point. It's also what placed Aereo on a collision course with federal copyright law. Aereo's opponents in that conflict would include not just the federal government but some of the most powerful names in media—ABC, NBC, CBS, Fox, and Disney, to name a few of the players who promptly filed suit. Reason's Damon Root looks at how the Aereo saga arrived at the Supreme Court and what happened next.