With less than two months to go before the Supreme Court hears oral arguments in the Aereo case, CEO and founder Chet Kanojia talks to TIME’s Sam Gustin. Among other things, Kanojia addresses the broadcasters’ threat that they will pull over-the-air signals and move their most popular programs to cable if Aereo prevails:
I don’t believe that to be a serious threat, just from a business perspective. According to the NAB [National Association of Broadcasters], there are nearly 60 million people who are using over-the-air access. So the networks would have to make a business decision that they are willing to cut off 60 million people.[…] Most importantly, they would essentially be killing local broadcasting because local broadcasting depends on network television to bring it an audience. So from a business imperative, a business rationale, and their mandate to program in the public interest, they would be running afoul of all of these things, so I don’t find that argument persuasive at all.
It would be inappropriate for me to forecast anything or presume anything, but we think the logic that we have laid out is very compelling, sound logic. We are confident in the merits of our position and we are eager to find out what the Supreme Court thinks.