Cablevision Systems Corp. said it lost a legal battle against several Hollywood studios and television networks to introduce a network-based digital video recorder service to its subscribers.
The New York-based cable operator said in a statement late on Thursday it is currently considering an appeal against the ruling by Judge Denny Chin of the U.S. District Court in Manhattan.
Cablevision was sued last May by several Hollywood studios and television networks, including those owned by Time Warner, News Corp., CBS and WaltDisney, which charged that the planned service would violate U.S. copyright laws.
Cablevision had hoped a network-based DVR system, called Remote Storage DVR or RS-DVR, would have done away with the need for the deployment of hundreds of thousands of digital set-top boxes to subscribers’ homes.
This would potentially have saved Cablevision significant administration and maintenance costs. Other cable operators had been vocal in their support for such a system.
But the studios and TV networks argued in two suits filed at the U.S. District Court in Manhattan that because the proposed service would allow subscribers to store television programs on the cable operator’s own computer servers, it would be breaking copyright agreements by effectively retransmitting the programs.
“We are disappointed by the judge’s decision, and continue to believe that remote-storage DVRs are consistent with copyright law and offer compelling benefits for consumers – including lower costs and broader availability of this popular technology, Cablevision said in the statement.
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