WASHINGTON -- The Supreme Court is taking up a dispute between broadcasters and an Internet startup company that has the potential to bring big changes to the television industry.
The company is Aereo Inc. and the justices are hearing arguments Tuesday over its service that gives subscribers in 11 U.S. cities access to television programs on their laptop computers, smartphones and other portable devices.
The broadcasters say Aereo is essentially stealing their programming by taking free television signals from the airwaves and sending them over the Internet without paying redistribution fees. Those fees are increasingly important to the broadcasters and were estimated at $3.3 billion last year.
The case involving Internet innovation is the latest for justices who sometimes seem to struggle to stay abreast of technological change.