updated 04:15 pm EDT, Mon June 29, 2009
Court reject RS-DVR appeal
The US Supreme Court today rejected an appeal by film studios and television networks of a New York court ruling that would allow a new type of digital video recorder service from Cablevision. A report says the justices refused to review a ruling made by a US Court of Appeals in New York that said Cablevision's proposed service would not directly infringe the copyrights of the media companies that produce the recorded movie and TV programs. No reason for the rejection was given.
Cablevision's proposed DVR service, known as Remote Storage Digital Video Recorder (RS-DVR) would let users record TV programs but store them off-site on Cablevision's servers. Subscribers to the service would not require purchasing expensive DVR hardware or upgrading it once their viewing habits make the hard drive capacity too small. Studios argue that saving content outside of a viewer's home violates licensing rights and fair use policies.
This differs from current services that only allow users to stream or download already existing content (Hulu, Netflix, etc.), as opposed to picking what to save for viewing later from an existing cable service. Amazon's Video On Demand and Xbox Video Marketplace are the most similar as they remember what users downloaded even if they delete content. PVR services such as TiVo rely on hardware storage in a user's home to retain content.
Cablevision argues its proposal is simply an extension of a traditional DVR device.