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Cablevision Files Amicus Brief in Aereo Litigation

BETHPAGE, NY -- Cablevision Systems Corporation (NYSE: CVC) today is filing an amicus brief with the U.S. Supreme Court that details the company’s legal position in the Aereo litigation.

The Cablevision amicus brief asserts that Aereo violates copyright law because it retransmits broadcast content without a license; however, it disputes the broadcasters’ anti-Aereo arguments that challenge important principles confirmed by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit in its 2008 Cablevision RS-DVR decision. Instead of focusing narrowly on the lawfulness of the Aereo service, the broadcasters appear to be asking the Supreme Court to undo decades of federal copyright law precedent and overturn the legal foundation on which cloud-based technologies have flourished. If those arguments are adopted, such a reversal of legal precedent could stifle innovation and future cloud-based technologies.

Cablevision offered the following statement:

“While we believe the Aereo service is illegal, in the broadcasters’ myopic view the cure is worse than the disease. Taken to its logical conclusion, the broadcasters’ reckless strategy could halt innovation in cloud services in the United States and ultimately imperil consumers’ access to current and future technologies. We believe the High Court can find the Aereo service to be unlawful because it steals television programming from content owners – an action Congress clearly intended to prevent – without threatening cloud-based technologies.”

While not taking a position on the legality of Aereo, leading nonprofit Internet advocacy organization the Center for Democracy and Technology (CDT) is also filing an amicus brief today that rejects the broadcasters’ arguments that attack the legal underpinnings of the Cablevision RS-DVR, cloud-based services and other emerging digital technologies. CDT’s position is detailed in its blog post found here. Signatories to the CDT amicus brief include a variety of trade groups including CTIA - The Wireless Association, United States Telecom Association, Internet Infrastructure Coalition, Digital Media Association and Information Technology Industry Council.

Cablevision Systems Corp. (NYSE: CVC)

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