Aereo? No Worries, Says Sinclair’s Smith

Noting that "there's nothing proprietary about [Aereo's] technology," Sinclair Broadcasting CEO David Smith says that if it appeared to become a viable business, broadcasters could step up and do it on their own.

What with all the recent wheeling and dealing, David Smith, Sinclair Broadcasting’s president-CEO has a lot on his mind.

One thing that’s not worrying him, however, is the threat from Aereo, the $12-a-month broadcast television streaming service that Barry Diller is heading.

During a conference call with analysts on Sinclair’s $373.3 million purchase of Fisher Communications, Smith said people may have misunderstood Fox and Univision’s threat to take their programming directly to cable and cut Aereo out of the loop.

“The notion they would go to cable means they would go to cable through us,” Smith said. “We would substitute other programming in primetime and in dayparts as we see fit to be competitive with Aereo …. It means we would change our cable content versus our over-the-air content.”

Noting that “there’s nothing proprietary about [Aereo’s] technology,” Smith said that if it appeared to be a viable business, broadcasters could step up and do it on their own.

“I have no concern about Aereo whatsoever,” Smith said.

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Comments (4)

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Matthew Castonguay says:

April 12, 2013 at 9:03 am

If broadcasters were going to do on their own, no need to emulate Aereo’s silly “Rube Goldberg” legal loophole-busting tiny little antennas technology, proprietary or not.

Chad Jacobsen says:

April 12, 2013 at 10:31 am

I don’t see how retrans fees are threatened by Aereo as their cost per capita ($5 a month?) is greater than the combined fees for the local stations in any market. And Aereo won’t deliver in small markets. The real threat is to cable. Aereo-type services eg Boxee plus Netflix, Amazon is enough for many (most?) millennials.

    Marilynn Garbarino says:

    April 12, 2013 at 12:18 pm

    true, we have a roku box. The NBA is the last thing keeping us from cutting cable completely off

darren shapiro says:

April 12, 2013 at 3:55 pm

If CBS and the rest do not react adversely to Aereo, it opens the gates for cable, satellite, etc, to ask for the same.


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