Aereo Banned in Western States

THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

SALT LAKE CITY — A Utah judge on Wednesday blocked TV streaming company Aereo Inc. from operating in several Western states, at least until the U.S. Supreme Court takes up a related case in April.

Broadcasters have argued Aereo is stealing TV signals without paying. Aereo says the tiny antennas it uses to capture signals before relaying them over the Internet should be treated the same as antennas that people use to pull TV signals for free.

District Judge Dale Kimball, who ruled Wednesday, argued that Aereo’s retransmission of video signals is “indistinguishable from a cable company.” He said that if Aereo continued to do business, it would damage broadcasters’ ability to negotiate with legitimate licensees, siphon viewers away from their websites and subject them to potential piracy.

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