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AMIIICAN BIOAÐCASTINC COM!ANIIS, INC., IT AI.,
!ITITIONIIS
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AIIIO, INC., IKA BAMBOOM IABS, INC.
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(I)
:2-40,/! 8+-4-!0-3
TLe CopyrigLt Act ol 1970, 17 !.S.C. 101 5A <5V",
grants tLe owner ol copyrigLt in an auoiovisual work
tLe exclusive rigLt ¨to perlorm tLe copyrigLteo work
publicly." 17 !.S.C. 100(4). Iesponoent's service
enables paying subscribers to receive copyrigLteo
broaocast television programs over tLe Internet by
using tLousanos ol miniature antennas to capture,
create, ano stream an inoivioual oigital copy ol a
broaocast program to eacL subscriber wLo seeks to
watcL it. TLe question presenteo is as lollows:
WLetLer responoent's service inlringes petitioners'
exclusive rigLt ¨to perlorm jtLeir| copyrigLteo
workjs| publicly."


(III)
05*;- /. 7/!0-!04
!age
Interest ol tLe !niteo States ........................................................ 1
Statement .................................................................................... z
Summary ol argument ............................................................. 11
Argument ................................................................................... 14
I. Iesponoent perlorms copyrigLteo works publicly
in violation ol 17 !.S.C. 100(4) ....................................... 10
A. Iesponoent ¨perlorms" copyrigLteo
works .......................................................................... 17
B. Iesponoent transmits perlormances ol
copyrigLteo broaocast programming ¨to
tLe public" .................................................................. z8
II. Ieversal ol tLe ]uogment below neeo not tLreaten
clouo computing ............................................................... 81
Conclusion ................................................................................. 84
05*;- /. 5201/+,0,-4
Cases:
P;>W v. L5X599N3818995 '589AC +:., zS8 !.S. 191
(1981) .................................................................................. z, z0
+8=?A89 +?A?5< +8Y95F (6>" v. +7?<=, 407 !.S. 091
(19S4) ........................................................................................ ô
+87A::6 $5AX:7W 32F 3332 v. +1+ .:9@?6D<F (6>",
ô80 I.8o 1z1 (zo Cir. z00S), cert. oenieo, ôô7 !.S.
940 (z009) ...................................................................... =8<<?K
+:KK;6?AC )595!?<?:6 :E /A8BF 33+ v. -575:F (6>",
No. z:18-cv-910, z014 WI 04zSzS (Ð. !taL Ieb. 19,
z014), appeal penoing, No. 14-40z0 (10tL Cir. oock-
eteo Ieb. z0, z014) ................................................................ z4
+:1A87 47="F (6>" v. 3::=$5AF (6>", 878 I.8o ô44
(4tL Cir. z004) ........................................................................ 19
*:7A6?DBA9C +:7=. v. /6?A5@ -7A?<A< )595!?<?:6F (6>.,
89z !.S. 890 (190S) ................................................. z, 8, 17, zz
IV

Cases÷Continueo: !age
*:Z )595!?<?:6 1A8A?:6<F (6>" v. P877C07?9957 +:6N
A56A 1C<"F 23+, 91ô I. Supp. zo 118S (C.Ð. Cal.
z01z), appeal penoing, No. 18-ôôzz0 (9tL Cir. oock-
eteo Ieb. 7, z018) ............................................................ zz, z4
*:Z )595!?<?:6 1A8A?:6<F (6>" v. *?9K#6 [ 33+,
No. 18-7ôS, z018 WI 4708414 (Sept. ô, z018), ap-
peal penoing, Nos. 18-714ô ano 18-7140 (Ð.C. Cir.
oocketeo Sept. 17, z018) ...................................................... z4
\5A7:N4:9@XC6N\8C57 1A;@?:< (6>" v. 47:W<A57F
3A@", ô4ô !.S. 918 (z00ô) ...................................................... 1ô
$8A?:689 P8<W5AY899 -<<]6 v. \:A:7:98F (6>",
10ô I.8o S41 (zo Cir. 1997) .................................................. z0
1:6C +:7=" :E -K" v. /6?!57<89 +?AC 1A;@?:<F (6>",
404 !.S. 417 (19S4) ......................................................... 88, 84
)595=7:K=A57 +:7=" v. +P1F (6>., 41ô !.S. 894
(1974) ............................................................................ 8, 17, zz
)X56A?5AB +56A;7C \;<?> +:7=. v. -?W56, 4zz !.S.
1ô1 (197ô) ................................................................................. 8
/6?A5@ 1A8A5< v. -K57?>86 1:>]C :E +:K=:<57<F -;N
AB:7<F ^ 2;Y9?<B57<, 0z7 I.8o 04 (zo Cir. z010),
cert. oenieo, 18z S. Ct. 800 (z011) ........................................ 7
&2([F (6>" v. ?!?F (6>", 091 I.8o z7ô (zo Cir. z01z),
cert. oenieo, 188 S. Ct. 1ôSô (z018) .................................... 80
&87657 P7:<" ,6AK]A (6>" v. &)_ 1C<"F (6>",
Sz4 I. Supp. zo 1008 (C.Ð. Cal. z011) ................................ 19
Statutes:

CopyrigLt Act ol 1970, 17 !.S.C. 101 5A <5V" ............... =8<<?K
17 !.S.C. 101 ............................................................. =8<<?K
17 !.S.C. 10z(a) ................................................................... z
17 !.S.C. 100(1) ............................................................. z, 8z
17 !.S.C. 100(8) ............................................................. z, 8z
V

Statutes÷Continueo: !age
17 !.S.C. 100(4) ................................................... z, ô, 1z, zS
17 !.S.C. 107 ...................................................................... 8z
17 !.S.C. 110 ...................................................................... z9
17 !.S.C. 110(1)-(4) ............................................................. ô
17 !.S.C. 110(ô)(A) ............................................................. ô
17 !.S.C. 110(0) ................................................................... ô
17 !.S.C. 110(S)-(10) ........................................................... ô
17 !.S.C. 111 ...................................................... ô, z8, z9, 80
17 !.S.C. 111(a) ........................................................... z8, 80
17 !.S.C. 111(a)(1) .............................................................. ô
17 !.S.C. 111(b) ................................................................. z8
17 !.S.C. 111(c) ................................................................. z8
17 !.S.C. 111(c)(1) ............................................................. 80
17 !.S.C. 111(o) ................................................................. 81
17 !.S.C. 111(o)(1)(I) ...................................................... 80
17 !.S.C. 111(l)(8) ............................................................. 80
17 !.S.C. App. 111(o)(z)(C) (1970) ................................. 80
17 !.S.C. 119 ........................................................................ ô
17 !.S.C. 1zz ........................................................................ ô
17 !.S.C. 701 ........................................................................ 1
CopyrigLt Act ol 1909, 17 !.S.C. 1-z1ô .................................. z
17 !.S.C. 1(c) (1970) ............................................................ z
17 !.S.C. 1(o) (1970) ........................................................... z
17 !.S.C. 1(e) (1970) ........................................................... z
Miscellaneous:
H.I. Iep. No. 1470, 94tL Cong., zo Sess.
(1970) ............................................................ 4, ô, z4, zô, z0, z9


VI

Miscellaneous÷Continueo: !age
!eter Mell & TimotLy Crance, National Inst. ol
Stanoaros & TecL., !.S. Ðep't ol Commerce, 1=5N
>?89 2;Y" `HHNOJI, )B5 $(1) 05E?6?A?:6 :E +9:;@
+:K=;A?6D (z011), Lttp://csrc.nist.gov/publications/
nistpubs/S00-14ô/S!S00-14ô.pol ......................................... 81
Iegister ol CopyrigLts, 18A599?A5 .:K5 _?5X57 ,ZN
A56<?:6 86@ '58;AB:7?a8A?:6 ->A 15>A?:6 OHb '5N
=:7A (June z00S), Lttp://www.copyrigLt.gov/reports/
section109-linal-report.pol .................................................. 80





(1)
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No. 18-401
AMIIICAN BIOAÐCASTINC COM!ANIIS, INC., IT AI.,
!ITITIONIIS
!"
AIIIO, INC., IKA BAMBOOM IABS, INC.

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,!0-+-40 /. 01- 2!,0-3 4050-4
TLis case presents questions about tLe scope ol tLe
CopyrigLt Act's public-perlormance rigLt in tLe con-
text ol novel tecLnologies lor transmitting ano viewing
copyrigLteo auoiovisual works using tLe Internet.
TLe !niteo States CopyrigLt Ollice is responsible lor
aoministering tLe registration ol creative works ano
lor aovising Congress, leoeral agencies, tLe courts,
ano tLe public on copyrigLt law ano policy. 17 !.S.C.
701. TLis case also implicates matters ol concern to
otLer leoeral agencies cLargeo witL aoministering
leoeral laws governing intellectual property, tLe tele-
vision inoustry, ano tLe Internet. TLe !niteo States
tLerelore Las a substantial interest in tLe Court's
oisposition ol tLis case.
z

4050-6-!0
1. TLe CopyrigLt Act ol 1970, 17 !.S.C. 101 5A <5V",
grants copyrigLt protection to ¨original works ol au-
tLorsLip lixeo in any tangible meoium ol expression."
17 !.S.C. 10z(a). CopyrigLt protection conlers certain
exclusive rigLts, incluoing tLe rigLts to copy ano to
oistribute tLe work. 17 !.S.C. 100(1) ano (8). Holoers
ol copyrigLts in auoiovisual, musical, ano certain otLer
works also Lave tLe exclusive rigLt ¨to perlorm tLe
copyrigLteo work publicly." 17 !.S.C. 100(4).
a. Iike tLe CopyrigLt Act in its current lorm, tLe
CopyrigLt Act ol 1909 granteo an exclusive rigLt to
perlorm certain copyrigLteo works ¨publicly" or ¨in
public." 17 !.S.C. 1(c), (o), ano (e) (1970). In 1981,
tLis Court Lelo tLat a Lotel inlringeo tLe public-
perlormance rigLt in musical works wLen it provioeo
speakers ano LeaopLones in eacL guestroom to enable
guests to Lear music receiveo by a ¨master raoio re-
ceiving set" operateo by tLe Lotel. P;>W v. L5X599N
3818995 '589AC +:., zS8 !.S. 191, 19ô. Writing lor a
unanimous Court, Justice Branoeis concluoeo tLat one
wLo ¨receives ano oistributes" a raoio broaocast ol a
copyrigLteo work is engageo in a public perlormance.
(@" at 19S.
In a series ol tLree oecisions between 190S ano
197ô, Lowever, tLe Court Lelo tLat businesses oio not
¨perlorm" copyrigLteo works wLen tLey maoe over-
tLe-air broaocasts ol tLose works available lor viewing
or listening by paying customers. In *:7A6?DBA9C
+:7=. v. /6?A5@ -7A?<A< )595!?<?:6F (6>., 89z !.S. 890
(190S), tLe Court aooresseo ¨community antenna tele-
vision" systems tLat receiveo broaocast television sig-
nals using master antennas locateo on Lilltops ano
tLen retransmitteo tLose signals over coaxial cables to
8

subscribers in nearby communities. (@" at 891-89z.
TLe Court Lelo tLat tLose systems oio not ¨perlorm"
tLe copyrigLteo television programs tLey retransmit-
teo because tLey oio ¨no more tLan enLancej| tLe
viewer's capacity to receive tLe broaocaster's signals"
by ¨proviojing| a well-locateo antenna witL an elli-
cient connection to tLe viewer's television set." (@. at
89S-899.
Subsequently, in )595=7:K=A57 +:7=" v. +P1F (6>.,
41ô !.S. 894 (1974), tLe Court Lelo tLat cable televi-
sion systems oio not ¨perlorm" copyrigLteo programs
even wLen tLey alloweo subscribers to view pro-
gramming originally broaocast in oistant cities. TLe
Court reasoneo tLat ¨reception ano recLanneling ol
jbroaocast| signals lor simultaneous viewing is essen-
tially a viewer lunction, irrespective ol tLe oistance
between tLe broaocasting station ano tLe ultimate
viewer." (@. at 40S.
Iinally, in )X56A?5AB +56A;7C \;<?> +:7=. v. -?N
W56, 4zz !.S. 1ô1 (197ô), tLe Court Lelo tLat a restau-
rant owner oio not ¨perlorm" copyrigLteo musical
works playeo over a raoio in Lis establisLment. TLe
Court explaineo tLat *:7A6?DBA9C ano )595=7:K=A57
¨explicitly oisavoweo tLe view tLat tLe reception ol an
electronic broaocast can constitute a perlormance,"
even il tLe person wLo receives tLe broaocast tLen
makes its contents available to members ol tLe public.
(@" at 101.
b. In tLe CopyrigLt Act ol 1970, Congress re-
sponoeo to tLose oecisions by aoopting expansive
oelinitions ol ¨perlorm" ano ¨publicly." TLe Act
states tLat to ¨perlorm" an auoiovisual work means
¨to sLow its images in any sequence or to make tLe
sounos accompanying it auoible." 17 !.S.C. 101. TLe
4

Act lurtLer provioes tLat ¨jt|o perlorm or oisplay a
work 'publicly' means":
(1) to perlorm or oisplay it at a place open to tLe
public or at any place wLere a substantial number
ol persons outsioe ol a normal circle ol a lamily ano
its social acquaintances is gatLereo; or
(z) to transmit or otLerwise communicate a per-
lormance or oisplay ol tLe work to a place specilieo
by clause (1) or to tLe public, by means ol any oe-
vice or process, wLetLer tLe members ol tLe public
capable ol receiving tLe perlormance or oisplay re-
ceive it in tLe same place or in separate places ano
at tLe same time or at oillerent times.
(Y?@.
TLe secono paragrapL ol tLat oelinition is common-
ly known as tLe ¨Transmit Clause." TLe 1970 Act's
oelinitional provisions also state tLat to ¨ 'transmit' a
perlormance" means ¨to communicate it by any oevice
or process wLereby images or sounos are receiveo
beyono tLe place lrom wLicL tLey are sent." 17 !.S.C.
101. Congress oelineo tLe terms ¨oevice" ano ¨pro-
cess" to incluoe ¨one now known or later oevelopeo."
(Y?@. TLose provisions overturneo *:7A6?DBA9C, )595N
=7:K=A57, ano -?W56 by establisLing tLat ¨tLe con-
cepts ol public perlormance ano public oisplay cover
not only tLe initial renoition or sLowing" ol a work,
¨but also any lurtLer act by wLicL tLat renoition or
sLowing is communicateo to tLe public." H.I. Iep.
No. 1470, 94tL Cong., zo Sess. 08 (1970) (1970 House
Ieport).
Congress balanceo tLe breaotL ol tLose new oelini-
tions witL provisions protecting tLe public's continueo
ability to en]oy perlormances ol copyrigLteo works.
ô

AltLougL ¨perlorm" is oelineo broaoly enougL to
incluoe even tLe act ol turning on a television, notLing
in tLe 1970 Act restricts private perlormances ol cop-
yrigLteo works. See 17 !.S.C. 100(4) (granting a
copyrigLt Loloer tLe exclusive rigLt ¨to perlorm tLe
copyrigLteo work =;Y9?>9C" (empLasis aooeo)). Con-
gress also enacteo÷ano Las continueo to reline÷a
oetaileo scLeme ol exemptions lor certain public per-
lormances. See, 5"D", 17 !.S.C. 110(1)-(4), (0), ano (S)-
(10) (qualilying eoucational, religious, governmental,
ano nonprolit perlormances); 17 !.S.C. 110(ô)(A)
(public reception ol a transmission ¨on a single receiv-
ing apparatus ol a kino commonly useo in private
Lomes" provioeo ¨no oirect cLarge is maoe to see or
Lear tLe transmission"); 17 !.S.C. 111(a)(1) (retrans-
mission ol broaocast signals by a Lotel or apartment
builoing to guest rooms or apartments).
Iinally, Congress aoopteo a statutory licensing
scLeme lor cable systems like tLe ones at issue in
*:7A6?DBA9C ano )595=7:K=A57. See 17 !.S.C. 111.
TLe 1970 Act rellecteo a oetermination tLat ¨cable
operators sLoulo be requireo to pay royalties to tLe
owners ol copyrigLteo programs retransmitteo by
tLeir systems." +8=?A89 +?A?5< +8Y95F (6>" v. +7?<=,
407 !.S. 091, 709 (19S4). But Congress also provioeo
cable operators witL a statutory license because it
recognizeo tLat it woulo be ¨impractical ano unouly
buroensome to require every cable system to negoti-
ate witL every copyrigLt owner wLose work was re-
transmitteo." 1970 House Ieport S9. Congress later
enacteo a comparable licensing scLeme lor satellite
television carriers. See 17 !.S.C. 119, 1zz. TLese
statutory licenses ensure tLat copyrigLt owners are
compensateo by entities tLat retransmit perlormances
0

ol tLeir works to paying subscribers, wLile also pro-
moting tLe spreao ol new ano uselul mecLanisms lor
communicating broaocast television programming to
tLe public.
z. Iesponoent cLarges consumers a montLly sub-
scription lee to watcL broaocast television programs
over tLe Internet. !et. App. 8a. WLen a subscriber
visits responoent's website, sLe is ¨presenteo witL a
programming guioe" tLat lists programs airing over
broaocast stations in Ler local area. (Y?@.
1
Il sLe
cLooses to ¨WatcL" a program tLat is currently airing,
tLe program begins playing on Ler computer or otLer
Internet-connecteo oevice. (@" at 8a-4a. Il tLe sub-
scriber insteao cLooses to ¨Iecoro" a program, re-
sponoent's system creates ano stores a oigital copy
tLat tLe subscriber can view over tLe Internet at a
time ol Ler cLoosing. (@" at 4a-ôa.
Iesponoent's system relies on ¨tLousanos ol inoi-
vioual antennas," eacL about tLe size ol a oime, ar-
rangeo on ¨large antenna boaros" at responoent's
central lacility. !et. App. 0a. WLen a subscriber
selects a television program, a centralizeo server
temporarily ¨assigns one ol tLe inoivioual antennas"
to tLat user ano tunes tLe assigneo antenna to tLe
appropriate cLannel. (Y?@. TLe antenna receives tLe
program, wLicL is ¨saveo to a large Laro orive" at
responoent's lacility in a ¨oirectory reserveo lor" tLe
user wLo requesteo it. (@. at 7a. Il tLe user cLooses
to recoro tLe program, tLe system ¨createjs| a com-
plete copy ol tLe program" in tLe user's oirectory.
(Y?@. Il tLe user cLooses to watcL tLe program live,

1
Iesponoent's service was available only in New York City
wLen tLis action was brougLt, but it Las now expanoeo to aooition-
al markets. !et. App. 8a; !et. 88-84.
7

¨tLe same operations occur, except tLat once six or
seven seconos ol programming Lave been saveo," tLe
system ¨begins streaming tLe program to tLe user"
lrom tLe copy in tLe user's personal oirectory. (Y?@.
z

Iesponoent's system is engineereo to ensure tLat
tLe oata streams ano recoroings associateo witL eacL
user remain separate. ¨No two users sLare tLe same
antenna at tLe same time," ano wLen two or more
users watcL or recoro tLe same program, ¨a separate
copy ol tLe program is createo lor eacL." !et. App.
7a-Sa. TLis means, lor example, tLat il 10,000 ol re-
sponoent's subscribers ¨are watcLing or recoroing tLe
Super Bowl, jresponoent| Las 10,000 antennas tuneo
to tLe cLannel broaocasting" tLe game, ano 10,000
copies ol tLe broaocast are createo in tLe users' inoi-
vioual oirectories on responoent's Laro orives. (@" at
Sa n.7.
8. !etitioners proouce, market, oistribute, ano
broaocast television programming, incluoing pro-
grams in wLicL tLey own tLe relevant copyrigLts. !et.

z
¨Streaming" is a metLoo ol transmitting auoio or vioeo content
over tLe Internet tLat allows tLe recipient to listen or watcL wLile
tLe transmission is in progress. See /6?A5@ 1A8A5< v. -K57?>86
1:>]C :E +:K=:<57<F -;AB:7<F ^ 2;Y9?<B57<, 0z7 I.8o 04, 74 (zo
Cir. z010), cert. oenieo, 18z S. Ct. 800 (z011). ¨Ðownloaoing," in
contrast, is tLe ¨transmission ol an electronic lile containing a
oigital copy" ol a work ¨tLat is sent lrom an on-line server to a
local Laro orive." (@. at 09. Oroinarily, tLe work containeo in tLe
copy cannot be seen or Learo ouring tLe oownloao process; ¨jo|nly
alter tLe lile Las been saveo on tLe user's Laro orive" can tLe user
Lear or see tLe work ¨by playing it using a soltware program on
Lis local computer" or otLer oevice. (Y?@" Streaming tLerelore
involves a ¨perlormance" ol an auoiovisual work, wLile oownloao-
ing (witLout simultaneous playing ol tLe work) ooes not. See ?@. at
78-7ô.
S

App. ô9a. It is unoisputeo tLat petitioners' copyrigLt-
eo works are transmitteo to responoent's subscribers
over responoent's system, ano tLat responoent ooes
not Lave a license to perlorm tLe copyrigLteo works
publicly. (@" at 8a.
In MarcL z01z, petitioners brougLt tLis suit lor
copyrigLt inlringement in tLe !niteo States Ðistrict
Court lor tLe SoutLern Ðistrict ol New York. !et.
App. 00a. !etitioners sougLt a preliminary in]unction
barring responoent lrom retransmitting tLeir copy-
rigLteo television programs wLile tLose programs
were being broaocast over tLe air. (@" at 00a-01a.
!etitioners contenoeo tLat tLose contemporaneous
retransmissions constituteo unautLorizeo public per-
lormances in violation ol 17 !.S.C. 100(4).
8
TLe ois-
trict court oeclineo to enter an in]unction, linoing tLat
petitioners' claim was lorecloseo by tLe Secono Cir-
cuit's oecision in +87A::6 $5AX:7W 32F 3332 v. +1+
.:9@?6D<F (6>", ô80 I.8o 1z1 (z00S) (+8Y95!?<?:6),
cert. oenieo, ôô7 !.S. 940 (z009). !et. App. ô9a-1z0a.
4. A oivioeo panel ol tLe court ol appeals allirmeo.
!et. App. 1a-ôSa.
a. TLe court ol appeals agreeo witL tLe oistrict
court tLat +8Y95!?<?:6 was controlling. TLat case
involveo a cable company tLat Lelo licenses to trans-
mit copyrigLteo programs to its subscribers live, but
also sougLt to oller subscribers an unlicenseo service

8
!etitioners' complaint also allegeo tLat responoent's non-
contemporaneous transmissions violateo tLeir public-perlormance
rigLts, ano lurtLer argueo tLat responoent's actions violateo tLeir
exclusive rigLt to reproouce tLeir copyrigLteo works ano consti-
tuteo contributory inlringement. !et. App. 1ôa n.9, 00a-01a.
TLose aooitional tLeories are not involveo Lere because petitioners
oio not rely on tLem in seeking a preliminary in]unction. (Y?@"
9

known as a ¨ 'Iemote Storage' Ðigital Vioeo Iecoro-
er" (IS-ÐVI). ô80 I.8o at 1z8-1z4; see !et. App. z4a.
Iike a traoitional Lome oigital vioeo recoroer (ÐVI),
Cablevision's IS-ÐVI system alloweo subscribers to
recoro television programs lor later viewing. +8Y95!?N
<?:6, ô80 I.8o at 1z4. Insteao ol storing tLe recoroeo
programs on a oevice in tLe subscriber's Lome, Low-
ever, tLe IS-ÐVI system alloweo subscribers to
¨recoro cable programming on central Laro orives
Louseo ano maintaineo" by Cablevision, ano to ¨re-
ceive playback ol tLose programs tLrougL tLeir Lome
television sets" using only a stanoaro cable box. (Y?@"
TLe court ol appeals in +8Y95!?<?:6 Lelo tLat tLe
IS-ÐVI system's transmissions oio not violate tLe
public-perlormance rigLt because tLey were private
ratLer tLan public perlormances. ô80 I.8o at 189.
TLe court re]ecteo tLe contention tLat tLe Transmit
Clause inquiry turns on wLetLer tLe public is capable
ol receiving tLe ¨same unoerlying perlormance" ol tLe
work. (@. at 180; see ?@. at 18ô-180. TLe court insteao
interpreteo tLe Transmit Clause to require an exami-
nation ol ¨tLe potential auoience ol 8 D?!56 A786<K?<N
<?:6 by an allegeo inlringer to oetermine wLetLer AB8A
A786<K?<<?:6 is 'to tLe public.' " (@" at 187 (empLasis
aooeo). Because ¨eacL IS-ÐVI playback transmis-
sion jwas| maoe to a single subscriber using a single
unique copy proouceo by tLat subscriber," tLe court
concluoeo tLat Cablevision's transmissions were not
maoe ¨to tLe public." (@" at 189.
In tLe present case, tLe court ol appeals interpret-
eo +8Y95!?<?:6 as establisLing several ¨guioeposts
tLat oeterminejo| tLe outcome" ol petitioners' suit.
!et. App. zza. Iirst, ¨tLe Transmit Clause oirects
courts to consioer tLe potential auoience ol tLe inoi-
10

vioual transmission." (Y?@" ¨Il tLat transmission is
'capable ol being receiveo by tLe public' tLe transmis-
sion is a public perlormance; il tLe potential auoience
ol tLe transmission is only one subscriber, tLe trans-
mission is not a public perlormance." (Y?@" Secono,
ano relateoly, ¨private transmissions * * * sLoulo
not be aggregateo," ano it is tLerelore ¨irrelevant to
tLe Transmit Clause analysis wLetLer tLe public is
capable ol receiving tLe same unoerlying work or
original perlormance ol tLe work by means ol many
transmissions." (Y?@" Iinally, ¨tLere is an exception
to tLis no-aggregation rule wLen private transmis-
sions are generateo lrom tLe same copy ol tLe work";
sucL transmissions ¨<B:;9@ be aggregateo," ano il
tLey ¨enable tLe public to view tLat copy, tLe trans-
missions are public perlormances." (Y?@"
4

Applying tLis interpretation ol tLe Transmit
Clause, tLe court ol appeals agreeo witL tLe oistrict
court tLat responoent's system is materially inoistin-
guisLable lrom tLe IS-ÐVI system louno to be non-
inlringing in +8Y95!?<?:6. TLe court explaineo tLat,
wLen a subscriber cLooses to watcL a program, re-
sponoent's system ¨creates a unique copy ol tLat pro-
gram on a portion ol a Laro orive assigneo only to tLat
jsubscriber|." !et. App. z8a. TLe court lurtLer ex-
plaineo tLat ¨tLe transmission sent by jresponoent|
ano receiveo by tLat user is generateo lrom tLat
unique copy." (Y?@" TLe court re]ecteo petitioners'
attempts to oistinguisL +8Y95!?<?:6 on otLer grounos,
linoing tLat tLese two leatures renoereo responoent's

4
TLe court ol appeals also interpreteo +8Y95!?<?:6 to Lolo tLat
¨'any lactor tLat limits tLe =:A56A?89 auoience ol a transmission is
relevant' to tLe Transmit Clause analysis." !et. App. zza (quoting
+8Y95!?<?:6, ô80 I.8o at 187).
11

system noninlringing unoer +8Y95!?<?:6's interpreta-
tion ol tLe Transmit Clause because ¨]ust as in +8N
Y95!?<?:6, tLe potential auoience ol eacL jol respono-
ent's transmissions| is tLe single user wLo requesteo
tLat a program be recoroeo." (Y?@"; see ?@" at z8a-88a.
b. Juoge CLin oissenteo. !et. App. 89a-ôSa. Juoge
CLin woulo Lave Lelo tLat, because responoent is
engageo in tLe business ol ¨transmitting television
signals to paying strangers, all ol its transmissions
are to tLe public, even il intervening oevices or pro-
cesses limit tLe potential auoience ol eacL separate
transmission to a single member ol tLe public." (@" at
44a-4ôa (brackets, internal quotation marks, ano cita-
tion omitteo). Juoge CLin oistinguisLeo +8Y95!?<?:6
on tLe grouno tLat tLe subscribers in tLat case ¨al-
reaoy Lao tLe ability to view television programs in
real-time tLrougL tLeir 8;AB:7?a5@ cable subscrip-
tions, ano tLe jIS-ÐVI| service at issue tLere was a
supplemental service tLat alloweo subscribers to store
tLat autLorizeo content lor later viewing." (@" at 40a-
41a. Here, in contrast, ¨no part ol jresponoent's|
system is autLorizeo." (@" at 41a.
ô. TLe court ol appeals oenieo petitioners' re-
quests lor reLearing ano reLearing en banc. !et. App.
1z7a-1ôôa. Juoge CLin, ]oineo by Juoge Wesley, ois-
senteo lrom tLe oenial ol reLearing en banc. (@" at
1zSa-1ôôa. In aooition to reiterating tLe arguments
maoe in Lis panel oissent, Juoge CLin argueo tLat
+8Y95!?<?:6 is inconsistent witL tLe text ano purpose
ol tLe Transmit Clause ano tLerelore sLoulo be over-
ruleo. (@" at 189a-1ô1a.
42665+< /. 5+926-!0
TLe CopyrigLt Act strikes a balance between tLe
public's interest in access to creative works ano au-
1z

tLors' rigLt to be compensateo lor tLe exploitation ol
tLe lruits ol tLeir labors. !noer tLe 1970 Act, a com-
pany tLat retransmits copyrigLteo broaocast televi-
sion programs must obtain a license, tLougL qualily-
ing retransmission services may avail tLemselves ol
tLe oetaileo statutory licensing scLemes establisLeo
by Congress. Iesponoent's unautLorizeo Internet
retransmissions violate tLese statutory requirements
ano inlringe petitioners' public-perlormance rigLts
unoer 17 !.S.C. 100(4). But a oecision re]ecting re-
sponoent's inlringing business mooel ano reversing
tLe ]uogment below neeo not call into question tLe
legitimacy ol innovative tecLnologies tLat allow con-
sumers to use tLe Internet to store, Lear, ano view
tLeir own lawlully acquireo copies ol copyrigLteo
works.
I. Iesponoent transmits copyrigLteo broaocast
programs to tLe public, witLout tLe autLorization ol
tLe copyrigLt Loloers, ano is tLerelore liable lor in-
lringement.
A. Iesponoent ¨perlorms" copyrigLteo works.
Iesponoent argues tLat, because an inoivioual sub-
scriber oetermines wLat content sLe will receive ano
wLen, it is tLe subscriber ratLer tLan responoent
itsell tLat ¨transmits" tLe broaocast programming. In
a variety ol circumstances, Lowever, commercial ac-
tors ¨transmit" or otLerwise ¨perlorm" copyrigLteo
works, even tLougL tLey oo so at tLe beLest ol inoi-
vioual customers.
Iesponoent botL owns ano actively controls tLe in-
oivioual antennas, centralizeo servers, ano soltware
tLat operate togetLer to receive broaocast signals ano
transmit copyrigLteo content to tLe public. TLe lunc-
tioning ol tLat integrateo system oepenos substantial-
18

ly on pLysical equipment tLat is useo in common by
responoent's subscribers. Iesponoent observes tLat,
lrom tLe subscriber's perspective, responoent's ser-
vice provioes substantially tLe same lunctionality tLat
consumers coulo obtain by purcLasing equipment lor
tLeir Lomes. In enacting tLe 1970 CopyrigLt Act
amenoments, Lowever, Congress overrooe oecisions
ol tLis Court tLat orew on tLe same analogy. In ap-
plying tLe CopyrigLt Act in its current lorm, tLe more
important lunctional equivalence is between respono-
ent ano tLe cable systems tLat tLe 1970 Congress
brougLt witLin tLe CopyrigLt Act's purview.
B. Iesponoent transmits perlormances ol copy-
rigLteo broaocast programming ¨to tLe public." Ior
tLese purposes, tLe term ¨perlormance" encompasses
Y:AB tLe allegeoly inlringing transmissions tLemselves
86@ any unoerlying perlormances, sucL as tLe net-
work broaocast. Because responoent's system trans-
mits tLe same unoerlying perlormances to numerous
subscribers, tLe system is clearly inlringing. In any
event, even il responoent were correct tLat its own
transmissions are tLe only relevant ¨perlormances,"
tLose transmissions tLemselves are maoe ¨to tLe
public" witLin tLe meaning ol tLe Transmit Clause.
AltLougL eacL transmission is ultimately sent only to
a single inoivioual, tLose transmissions are 8!8?98Y95
to any member ol tLe public wLo is willing to pay tLe
montLly lee.
Contrary to tLe court ol appeals' suggestion, treat-
ing responoent as an inlringer woulo not call into
question tLe legality ol purely private perlormances,
sucL as an inoivioual's transmission ol a lawlully-
acquireo copyrigLteo work to Limsell (5"D", to lacili-
tate viewing at a oillerent location). Ano any ooubt
14

about tLe statute's proper application to responoent's
system is resolveo by tLe context ano purposes ol tLe
1970 Act, wLicL createo a nuanceo scLeme to govern
tLe retransmission ol over-tLe-air broaocasts ol copy-
rigLteo television programs to tLe public, incluoing
oetaileo exceptions ano a reticulateo statutory licens-
ing scLeme. TLere is no reason to tLink Congress
woulo Lave intenoeo to allow responoent to escape
tLese regulations merely because ol tLe tecLnical
oetails ol its retransmission system.
II. Ieversal ol tLe ]uogment below neeo not
tLreaten tLe legality ol clouo computing. One lunction
ol clouo-computing services is to oller consumers
more numerous ano convenient means ol playing back
copies tLat tLe consumers Lave 89758@C lawlully ac-
quireo. A consumer's playback ol Ler own lawlully-
acquireo copy ol a copyrigLteo work to Lersell will
oroinarily be a non-inlringing private perlormance,
ano it may be protecteo by lair-use principles as well.
Iesponoent's service, by contrast, enables sub-
scribers to gain access to copyrigLteo content ?6 AB5
E?7<A ?6<A86>5÷tLe same service tLat cable companies
Lave traoitionally provioeo. !nlike cable companies,
Lowever, responoent ooes not pay licensing lees to tLe
copyrigLt Loloers. A oecision Loloing tLat responoent
publicly perlorms tLe broaocast programs it transmits
to paying subscribers will not tLreaten tLe use ol
oillerent tecLnologies tLat assist consumers in Lear-
ing or viewing tLeir own lawlully-acquireo copies ol
copyrigLteo works.
5+926-!0
¨jT|Le aoministration ol copyrigLt law is an exer-
cise in managing tLe traoeoll " between ¨supporting
creative pursuits tLrougL copyrigLt protection ano


promoting innovation in new communication tecLnolo-
gies by limiting tLe incioence ol liability lor copyrigLt
inlringement." \5A7:N4:9@XC6N\8C57 1A;@?:< (6>" v.
47:W<A57F 3A@", ô4ô !.S. 918, 9zS (z00ô). TLis case
implicates tLese two competing values. On tLe one
Lano, tLe transmission ol a perlormance ol a copy-
rigLteo auoiovisual work to tLe public is copyrigLt
inlringement, regaroless ol tLe tecLnical oetails ol tLe
¨oevice or process" by wLicL it is carrieo out. 17
!.S.C. 101. On tLe otLer Lano, members ol tLe public
may legitimately acquire ano use pLysical equipment
(5"D", an improveo television antenna) tLat enLances
tLeir ability to receive broaocast programming, ano
may privately perlorm tLeir own lawlully acquireo
copies ol copyrigLteo works.
IacL ol tLese principles is valio so lar as it goes,
ano tLe parties invoke one or tLe otLer ol tLem in
support ol tLeir competing cLaracterizations ol re-
sponoent's activity. !etitioners conteno tLat respono-
ent, like tLe cable companies wLose activities Con-
gress sougLt to regulate in tLe 1970 CopyrigLt Act
amenoments, retransmits broaocast television signals
to tLe public. Iesponoent, by contrast, oescribes
itsell not as a retransmitter, but as a provioer ol pLys-
ical equipment tLrougL wLicL its subscribers acquire
broaocast programming ano transmit it to tLemselves
over tLe Internet.
TLe proper resolution ol tLis oispute is straigLt-
lorwaro. !nlike a purveyor ol Lome antennas, or tLe
lessor ol Lilltop space on wLicL inoivioual consumers
may erect tLeir own antennas (see Iesp. Br. 1S), re-
sponoent ooes not simply provioe access to equipment
or otLer property tLat lacilitates customers' reception
ol broaocast signals. IatLer, responoent operates an
10

integrateo <C<A5K÷?"5", a ¨oevice or process"÷wLose
lunctioning oepenos on its customers' sLareo use ol
common lacilities. TLe lact tLat as part ol tLat system
responoent uses unique copies ano many inoivioual
transmissions ooes not alter tLe conclusion tLat it is
retransmitting broaocast content ¨to tLe public."
Iike its competitors, responoent tLerelore must ob-
tain licenses to perlorm tLe copyrigLteo content on
wLicL its business relies. TLat conclusion, Lowever,
sLoulo not call into question tLe legitimacy ol busi-
nesses tLat use tLe Internet to provioe new ways lor
consumers to store, Lear, ano view tLeir own lawlully
acquireo copies ol copyrigLteo works.
,# +-48/!3-!0 8-+./+64 7/8<+,910-3 =/+>4
82*;,7;< ,! ?,/;50,/! /. %@ 2#4#7# %A)B(C
Iesponoent ooes not oispute tLat tLe transmis-
sions ol broaocast programming lrom its central lacil-
ity to subscribers constitute perlormances witLin tLe
meaning ol tLe CopyrigLt Act. Insteao, responoent
oenies tLat ?A transmits tLe copyrigLteo material. On
responoent's view, it simply provioes subscribers witL
access to pLysical equipment, wLicL tLe subscribers
use to capture broaocast signals ano to transmit tLe
copyrigLteo content to tLemselves.
AltLougL tLe court ol appeals ruleo in responoent's
lavor, it oio not oecioe tLe case on tLat tLeory. To tLe
contrary, tLe court oecioeo tLe case on tLe assump-
tion tLat ¨jresponoent| transmits to its subscribers
broaocast television programs over tLe internet lor a
montLly subscription lee." !et. App. 8a.
ô
TLe court

ô
Iike tLe court ol appeals, tLe oistrict court oio not aooress
responoent's argument tLat ¨it is 'tLe consumer, not jresponoent|,
wLo makes tLe transmissions'" at issue Lere. !et. App. 107a.
17

nevertLeless Lelo tLat responoent oio not inlringe
petitioners' public-perlormance rigLts because tLe
court vieweo eacL ol responoent's transmissions as a
separate private perlormance.
BotL ol tLose rationales lack merit. Iike tLe cable
television systems at issue in *:7A6?DBA9C +:7=" v.
/6?A5@ -7A?<A< )595!?<?:6F (6>", 89z !.S. 890 (190S),
ano )595=7:K=A57 +:7=" v. +P1F (6>", 41ô !.S. 894
(1974), responoent captures broaocast television sig-
nals ano transmits programming to subscribers lor a
lee. Ano, unoer tLe expansive oelinition ol ¨perlorm
* * * 'publicly' " tLat Congress enacteo in response
to tLose oecisions, 17 !.S.C. 101, responoent's trans-
missions are public perlormances tLat cannot lawlully
be maoe witLout licenses lrom tLe copyrigLt Loloers.
5# +DEF"GHDGI J8DKL"KMEN 7"FOKPQRIDH ="KSE
!noer tLe CopyrigLt Act, ¨jt|o perlorm or oisplay
a work 'publicly' means," ?6A57 89?8:
jT|o transmit or otLerwise communicate a perlor-
mance or oisplay ol tLe work * * * to tLe pub-
lic, by means ol any oevice or process, wLetLer tLe
members ol tLe public capable ol receiving tLe per-
lormance or oisplay receive it in tLe same place or
in separate places ano at tLe same time or at oil-
lerent times.
17 !.S.C. 101. TLe Act lurtLer provioes tLat to
¨ 'transmit' a perlormance" ol an auoiovisual work is
¨to communicate it by any oevice or process wLereby
images or sounos are receiveo beyono tLe place lrom
wLicL tLey are sent." (Y?@. Iesponoent ollers a sub-
scription service tLat uses centralizeo equipment to
provioe subscribers witL retransmissions ol broaocast
television programming. Iike tLe cable companies
1S

tLat tLe 1970 Congress sougLt to bring witLin tLe
CopyrigLt Act's purview, responoent is legally re-
sponsible lor transmitting tLe copyrigLteo works its
servers seno to subscribers.
1. Iesponoent empLasizes tLat inoivioual sub-
scribers control wLen its antennas are active, select
tLe specilic cLannels tLe antennas receive, ano oictate
wLen tLe system transmits perlormances ol television
programs to subscribers. Iesp. Br. 17-1S. Iespono-
ent contenos on tLat basis tLat it is tLe inoivioual
subscriber, ratLer tLan responoent, ¨wLo employs
jresponoent's| system to transmit broaocast pro-
gramming to Lersell." (@. at 17; see ?@. at 14 (¨A
unique copy ol a perlormance ol a work, createo at tLe
oirection ol tLe user, is transmitteo only by ano to
tLat user."). Iesponoent argues tLat tLis ¨volitional-
conouct test appropriately rellects tLe actual opera-
tion ol jresponoent's| system, wLicL makes equipment
locateo on jresponoent's| premises available lor cus-
tomers' use." (@. at 1S.
TLe ioentity ol tLe person wLo oirects tLat a per-
lormance occur may sometimes be 7595!86A in oecio-
ing wLo Las perlormeo copyrigLteo material. TLe lact
tLat a particular transmission or otLer perlormance
was prompteo by a customer request, Lowever, is not
by itsell oispositive.
Ior example, vioeo-on-oemano services allow cable
subscribers to request inoivioualizeo transmissions ol
content, sucL as movies or television sLows, storeo on
computers at tLe cable company's lacility. See +87N
A::6 $5AX:7W 32F 3332 v. +1+ .:9@?6D<F (6>", ô80
I.8o 1z1, 1zô (zo Cir. z00S), cert. oenieo, ôô7 !.S. 940
(z009). Streaming services sucL as Netllix, Hulu, ano
Amazon also make television programs ano movies
19

available on oemano over tLe Internet. !et. App. ôôa
n.ô. All ol tLese services involve tLe transmission ol
content only on tLe commano ol tLe inoivioual user,
wLo cLooses wLicL content to play ano wLen to begin
playing it. It is nevertLeless tLese businesses, ratLer
tLan tLeir customers, tLat ¨transmit" ano tLereby
¨perlorm" tLe relevant copyrigLteo works. See
&87657 P7:<" ,6AK]A (6>" v. &)_ 1C<"F (6>", Sz4
I. Supp. zo 1008, 1010 (C.Ð. Cal. z011) (concluoing
tLat ¨tLe lact tLat ja streaming service's| customers
initiate tLe transmission by turning on tLeir comput-
ers ano cLoosing jtLe content| tLey wisL to view is
immaterial" to tLe inlringement analysis).
0
Accoro-
ingly, tLe mere lact tLat responoent's system re-
sponos automatically to user commanos cannot ex-
empt responoent lrom oirect liability lor transmitting
copyrigLteo works.
z. On tLe otLer Lano, ownersLip ol tLe pLysical
equipment by wLicL a perlormance is accomplisLeo
ooes not always oetermine wLo perlorms a copyrigLt-
eo work. WLen an inoivioual plays Lis own CÐ ol
copyrigLteo music on tLe souno system ol a renteo
car, tLat inoivioual, ratLer tLan tLe rental company,
perlorms tLe copyrigLteo songs. By tLe same token,
¨tLe owner ol a traoitional copying macLine wLose
customers pay a lixeo amount per copy ano operate
tLe macLine tLemselves" is not oirectly liable lor
inlringing tLe reproouction rigLt wLen a customer
ouplicates a copyrigLteo work. +:1A87 47="F (6>" v.

0
Similarly, il a movie tLeater's policy is to sLow a lilm only wLen
a customer is present, ano a single patron purcLases a ticket, tLe
lilm patron ooes not tLereby ¨perlorm" tLe lilm. IatLer, tLe
tLeater perlorms tLe lilm by sLowing tLe images ol tLe lilm ano
making its sounos auoible. See 17 !.S.C. 101 (oelining ¨perlorm").
z0

3::=$5AF (6>", 878 I.8o ô44, ôô0 (4tL Cir. z004). Ie-
sponoent's ownersLip ol tLe antennas ano otLer pLys-
ical equipment locateo at its central lacility tLerelore
ooes not, by itsell, compel tLe conclusion tLat re-
sponoent (ratLer tLan its customers) transmits, ano
tLereby perlorms, tLe copyrigLteo works.
8. Iesponoent, Lowever, not only owns, but active-
ly controls, tLe system ol antennas, centralizeo serv-
ers, ano soltware tLat receives broaocast signals ano
transmits content to tLe user. TLe oistrict court
louno tLat responoent's ¨antennas lunction inoe-
penoently," in tLe sense tLat ¨eacL antenna separately
75>5?!5< tLe incoming broaocast signal, ratLer tLan
lunctioning collectively witL tLe otLer antennas or
witL tLe assistance ol tLe sLareo metal substructure."
!et. App. 78a (empLasis aooeo); see Iesp. Br. zz. But
wLile eacL antenna lunctions inoepenoently in 75>5?!N
?6D broaocast signals, responoent's centralizeo server
ano otLer sLareo equipment are integral to tLe pro-
cess by wLicL content is A786<K?AA5@ to tLe subscrib-
er. See !et. App. 00a-07a. Moreover, tLe existence ol
separate antennas serves no apparent operational
purposes, ano insteao was aoopteo alter +8Y95!?<?:6,
in aio ol responoent's ellorts to renoer eacL separate
transmission a private perlormance. See ?@" at 8za-
88a.
Iesponoent tLus operates an integrateo system,
substantially oepenoent on pLysical equipment tLat is
useo in common by responoent's subscribers, tLrougL
wLicL any ¨paying strangerj|" (?@. at 44a (CLin, J.,
oissenting)) may access responoent's antenna larms
ano receive a transmission ol copyrigLteo television
programs. Iesponoent tLerelore ¨transmits" perlor-
z1

mances ol copyrigLteo works in a way tLat mere
equipment suppliers clearly oo not.
Iven il responoent's antennas were vieweo in iso-
lation lrom tLe otLer centralizeo equipment useo in
tLe transmitting process, any analogy to purveyors ol
Lome antennas woulo be inapt. It is true tLat, at any
moment in time, eacL subscriber wLo is loggeo into
tLe system is assigneo a oiscrete antenna. TLat
unique assignment occurs, Lowever, only alter tLe
subscriber Las loggeo in ano Las requesteo a trans-
mission ol a particular copyrigLteo work. See !et.
App. 8a, 0a. Ano wLen tLat subscriber is no longer
connecteo to responoent's system (or oiscontinues Ler
subscription), responoent's computerizeo server may
reassign tLe same antenna to a oillerent subscriber÷
tLat is, a oillerent paying stranger. (@" at Sa n.7; ?@"
at 44a (CLin, J., oissenting). TLe montLly lee tLat
responoent's subscribers pay tLus purcLases a rigLt
ol access to a sLareo pool ol antennas ano tLe content
tLey make available, not (as in responoent's Lilltop
LypotLetical, see Iesp. Br. 1S) to a oiscrete antenna
oeoicateo solely to a single subscriber's use.
4. Iesponoent also observes tLat, lrom tLe view-
er's perspective, responoent's service provioes sub-
scribers substantially tLe same lunctionality tLat
consumers coulo obtain, witLout incurring liability lor
copyrigLt inlringement, by purcLasing various pieces
ol equipment lor tLeir Lomes. See Iesp. Br. z1-zz.
TLat lunctional resemblance, Lowever, cannot control
tLe oetermination wLetLer responoent is transmitting
copyrigLteo content. Inoeeo, Congress aoopteo tLe
broao oelinitions ol ¨perlorm" ano ¨transmit" in tLe
1970 Act to overturn tLe results ol tLis Court's oeci-
zz

sions applying tLe same logic on wLicL responoent
now relies.
In *:7A6?DBA9C, tLe Court noteo tLat cable systems
¨receivejo| programs tLat Lajo| been releaseo to tLe
public" by broaocast ano merely ¨enLancejo| tLe
viewer's capacity to receive tLe broaocaster's signals"
by provioing ¨a well-locateo antenna witL an ellicient
connection to tLe viewer's television set." 89z !.S. at
899-400. In )595=7:K=A57, tLe Court reasoneo tLat
¨jw|Len a television broaocaster transmits a program,
it Las maoe public lor simultaneous viewing ano Lear-
ing tLe contents ol tLat program." 41ô !.S. at 40S.
TLe Court concluoeo tLat ¨jt|Le privilege ol receiving
tLe broaocast electronic signals ano ol converting
tLem into tLe sigLts ano sounos ol tLe program in-
Leres in all members ol tLe public wLo Lave tLe means
ol ooing so." (Y?@.
TLe 1970 Act overturneo tLose oecisions, making
clear tLat a company can ¨perlorm" copyrigLteo
works witLin tLe meaning ol tLe CopyrigLt Act even
wLen it simply retransmits broaocast signals to con-
sumers wLo coulo Lave acquireo tLem lor lree over
tLe airwaves. See *:Z )595!?<?:6 1A8A?:6<F (6>" v.
P877C07?9957 +:6A56A 1C<"F 23+, 91ô I. Supp. zo
118S, 1140 (C.Ð. Cal. z01z), appeal penoing, No. 18-
ôôzz0 (9tL Cir. oocketeo Ieb. 7, z018) (P877C07?9957)
(explaining tLat Congress ¨re]ecteo" tLe ¨mooe ol
reasoning" useo in *:7A6?DBA9C ano )595=7:K=A57,
wLicL was baseo on tLe ¨equivalency between (1) wLat
inoiviouals coulo lawlully oo lor tLemselves ano (z)
wLat a commercial provioer ooing tLe same tLing lor a
number ol inoiviouals coulo lawlully oo"). Iike cable,
satellite, ano Internet streaming services tLat re-
transmit local broaocast signals to consumers using
z8

otLer means, responoent tLerelore is ¨perlorming"
tLe broaocast programs witLin tLe meaning ol tLe
CopyrigLt Act.
*# +DEF"GHDGI 0KTGEMPIE 8DKL"KMTGUDE /L 7"FOKPQRIDH
*K"THUTEI 8K"QKTMMPGQ J0" 0RD 8VWXPUN
1. !noer tLe Transmit Clause, a company ¨per-
lormjs| or oisplayjs|" a work ¨publicly" il it
transmitjs| or otLerwise communicatejs| a perlor-
mance or oisplay ol tLe work * * * to tLe pub-
lic, by means ol any oevice or process, wLetLer tLe
members ol tLe public capable ol receiving tLe per-
lormance or oisplay receive it in tLe same place or
in separate places ano at tLe same time or at oil-
lerent times.
17 !.S.C. 101. !noer tLat oelinition, tLe term ¨per-
lormance" encompasses Y:AB tLe transmission or
communication to tLe eventual viewer or listener 86@
any unoerlying perlormance tLat is transmitteo or
communicateo. OtLer CopyrigLt Act provisions con-
lirm tLis interpretation. Ior example, 17 !.S.C. 111,
wLicL regulates tLe retransmission ol broaocast sig-
nals, repeateoly relers to ¨jt|Le seconoary transmis-
sion :E 8 =57E:7K86>5 :7 @?<=98C :E 8 X:7W 5KY:@?5@
?6 8 =7?K87C A786<K?<<?:6." 17 !.S.C. 111(a) (em-
pLasis aooeo); see 17 !.S.C. 111(b) ano (c).
TLe legislative Listory is to tLe same ellect:
jA| singer is perlorming wLen Le or sLe sings a
song; a broaocasting network is perlorming wLen it
transmits Lis or Ler perlormance * * * ; a local
broaocaster is perlorming wLen it transmits tLe
network broaocast; a cable television system is per-
lorming wLen it retransmits tLe broaocast to its
subscribers; ano any inoivioual is perlorming
z4

wLenever Le or sLe * * * communicates tLe
perlormance by turning on a receiving set.
1970 House Ieport 08. TLus, wLen a cable company
retransmits a local broaocast signal unoer tLe circum-
stances oescribeo in tLe above-quoteo passage, tLe
statutory term ¨perlormance" encompasses tLe cable
company's own retransmission, as well as tLe unoerly-
ing perlormances embooieo in tLe local broaocast ano
tLe singer's original renoition.
As several courts outsioe tLe Secono Circuit Lave
concluoeo, responoent ano provioers ol similar ser-
vices are plainly engageo in public perlormances witL-
in tLe meaning ol Section 101. See +:KK;6?AC )595N
!?<?:6 :E /A8BF 33+ v. -575:F (6>", No. z:18-cv-910,
z014 WI 04zSzS, at *7-*S (Ð. !taL Ieb. 19, z014), ap-
peal penoing, No. 14-40z0 (10tL Cir. oocketeo Ieb. z0,
z014); *:Z )595!?<?:6 1A8A?:6<F (6>" v. *?9K#6 [
33+, No. 18-7ôS, z018 WI 4708414, at *18 (Ð.Ð.C.
Sept. ô, z018), appeal penoing, Nos. 18-714ô ano
18-7140 (Ð.C. Cir. oocketeo Sept. 17, z018);
P877C07?9957, 91ô I. Supp. zo at 1140. TLe over-tLe-
air broaocasts ol petitioners' copyrigLteo programs by
local television stations unquestionably constitute
¨perlormancejs|" ol tLose copyrigLteo works. Ie-
sponoent ¨transmitjs| or otLerwise communicatejs|"
tLose perlormances to its paying subscribers by
means ol a ¨oevice or process." TLe transmission ol a
perlormance to responoent's paying subscribers quali-
lies as a transmission ol tLat perlormance ¨to tLe
public" witLin tLe meaning ol tLe CopyrigLt Act. See
1970 House Ieport 04-0ô (explaining tLat tLe Trans-
mit Clause encompasses transmissions to ¨a limiteo
segment ol tLe public, sucL as tLe occupants ol Lotel
rooms or tLe subscribers ol a cable television ser-


vice"). Ano, unoer tLe plain terms ol Section 101, tLe
lact tLat responoent's subscribers receive tLe perlor-
mance ¨in separate places" ano ¨at oillerent times"
ooes not alter tLe public cLaracter ol responoent's
perlormances.
TLe broao statutory oelinition ol ¨transmit" lur-
tLer conlirms tLis conclusion. ¨To 'transmit' a per-
lormance or oisplay is to communicate it by any oevice
or process wLereby images or sounos are receiveo
beyono tLe place lrom wLicL tLey are sent." 17 !.S.C.
101. Ano a ¨oevice" or ¨process" is oelineo to incluoe
¨one now known or later oevelopeo." (Y?@" TLese
oelinitions are ¨broao enougL to incluoe all conceiva-
ble lorms ano combinations ol wireo or wireless com-
munications meoia, incluoing but by no means limiteo
to raoio ano television broaocasting as we know
tLem." 1970 House Ieport 04. Congress may not
Lave envisioneo tLe oetails ol responoent's system ol
miniature antennas, large Laro orives, ano Internet
streaming wLen it enacteo tLe statute in 1970. TLe
CopyrigLt Act's broao, tecLnology-neutral oelinitions
make clear, Lowever, tLat responoent's system ol
inoivioualizeo oigital transmissions constitutes a ¨oe-
vice or process" lor communicating tLe perlormances
embooieo in television broaocasts to tLe public. As
Juoge CLin explaineo, one ¨can 'transmit' " witLin tLe
meaning ol tLe statute ¨by senoing one transmission
or multiple transmissions." !et. App. 147a-14Sa.
z. TLe court ol appeals reacLeo a contrary result
baseo on +8Y95!?<?:6's Loloing tLat tLe only ¨perlor-
mance" relerenceo in tLe Transmit Clause is tLe one
createo by an act ol transmission itsell. ¨+8Y95!?<?:6
* * * oecioeo tLat 'capable ol receiving tLe per-
lormance' relers not to tLe perlormance ol tLe unoer-
z0

lying work being transmitteo but ratLer to tLe trans-
mission itsell, since tLe 'transmission ol a perlor-
mance is itsell a perlormance.' " !et. App. 1Sa (quot-
ing +8Y95!?<?:6, ô80 I.8o at 184). On tLis unoerstano-
ing, tLe court below Lelo tLat responoent's transmis-
sions are private perlormances because ¨tLe potential
auoience ol eacL jol responoent's| transmissionjs| is
tLe single user wLo requesteo tLat a program be rec-
oroeo," even tLougL tLe collective result ol respono-
ent's inoivioual transmissions is to communicate tLe
same unoerlying perlormance ol a program to a large
number ol subscribers. (@" at z8a.
As explaineo above, tLe Transmit Clause ooes
make clear tLat tLe ¨transmission ol a perlormance is
itsell a perlormance." In some circumstances, more-
over, tLe initial ¨perlormance" may be tLe act ol
transmission itsell. Ior example, wLen a television
network broaocasts a live sporting event, no unoerly-
ing perlormance preceoes tLe initial transmission÷
tLe telecast itsell is tLe only copyrigLteo work. See
$8A?:689 P8<W5AY899 -<<]6 v. \:A:7:98F (6>", 10ô I.8o
S41, S40-S47 (zo Cir. 1997).
It ooes not lollow, Lowever, tLat tLe :69C relevant
¨perlormance" lor tLese purposes is tLe particular
transmission or set ol transmissions tLat is allegeo to
be inlringing. Transmissions or retransmissions ol
copyrigLteo content lrequently contain one or more
unoerlying perlormances. See 1970 House Ieport 08
(explaining tLat ¨a local broaocaster is perlorming
wLen it transmits tLe network broaocast" ano ¨a cable
television system is perlorming wLen it retransmits
tLe broaocast to its subscribers"); cl. P;>W v. L5X599N
3818995 '589AC +:", zS8 !.S. 191, 19S (1981) (explain-
ing tLat ¨notLing in tLe Act * * * prevents a sin-
z7

gle renoition ol a copyrigLteo selection lrom resulting
in more tLan one public perlormance"). TLat is un-
questionably true ol responoent's transmissions, eacL
ol wLicL contains tLe prior perlormance by tLe local
broaocaster (ano typically anteceoent perlormances
as well). By transmitting AB:<5 perlormances to tLe
public, responoent perlorms tLe copyrigLteo works
publicly, even tLougL eacL ol responoent's transmis-
sions goes to a single subscriber.
TLe court ol appeals' interpretation oisregaros tLe
unoerlying perlormances ano insteao treats tLe per-
lormance createo by tLe act ol transmission as tLe
:69C ¨perlormance" encompasseo by tLe Transmit
Clause. TLe relevant oelinitional provision specilies,
Lowever, tLat a company perlorms a copyrigLteo work
publicly wLenever it ¨transmitjs| or otLerwise com-
municatejs| 8 perlormance or oisplay ol tLe work" to
tLe public. 17 !.S.C. 101 (empLasis aooeo). TLat
language applies by its terms wLen 5?AB57 tLe allegeo-
ly inlringing transmission itsell :7 some unoerlying
perlormance is transmitteo to tLe public. TLe court ol
appeals' approacL woulo also renoer superlluous Con-
gress's oirective tLat tLe public-perlormance rigLt
may be inlringeo ¨wLetLer tLe members ol tLe public
capable ol receiving tLe perlormance or oisplay re-
ceive it * * * at tLe same time or at oillerent
times." (Y?@. TLe court ioentilieo no scenario in
wLicL a particular transmission coulo be receiveo ¨at
oillerent times."
8. TLe court ol appeals expresseo concern tLat a
more natural reaoing ol tLe text woulo ¨make a seem-
ingly private transmission public by virtue ol actions
taken by tLiro parties." !et. App. 19a. TLe court
suggesteo tLat, ¨il a person recoros a program ano
zS

tLen transmits tLat recoroing to a television in anotL-
er room, Le woulo be publicly perlorming tLe work
because some otLer party, namely tLe original broao-
caster, Lao once transmitteo tLe same perlormance to
tLe public." (Y?@" Iesponoent ecLoes tLe same ob]ec-
tion. Iesp. Br. 18-14. But tLis concern rests on a
misunoerstanoing ol tLe statute. AltLougL tLe Trans-
mit Clause encompasses tLe transmission or commu-
nication ol an unoerlying perlormance, it imposes
liability only on parties wLo ¨transmit or otLerwise
communicate" tLat perlormance ¨to tLe public." 17
!.S.C. 101; see 17 !.S.C. 100(4). A party wLo trans-
mits a perlormance ol a copyrigLteo work only to
Limsell ooes not inlringe tLe copyrigLt because Le
ooes not transmit tLe perlormance ¨to tLe public,"
even tLougL otLers may oo so.
4. Iven il responoent's own transmissions were
tLe only ¨perlormances" relevant to tLe inlringement
analysis, tLose transmissions woulo still be ¨to tLe
public" witLin tLe meaning ol tLe Transmit Clause.
TLe court below reacLeo a contrary conclusion be-
cause eacL ol responoent's transmissions goes to a
single subscriber. !noer tLe Transmit Clause, Low-
ever, tLe relevant ¨public" is tLe auoience ¨>8=8Y95 :E
75>5?!?6D tLe perlormance." 17 !.S.C. 101 (empLasis
aooeo). TLe essence ol responoent's business mooel is
its promise to transmit broaocast programming to any
member ol tLe public wLo is willing to pay a montLly
lee÷in tLe woros ol tLe oissent below, to any ¨paying
strangerj|," !et. App. 44a. IacL ol responoent's
transmissions is tLerelore ¨to tLe public" in tLe rele-
vant sense, even tLougL eacL ultimately goes only to a
single subscriber.
z9

ô. Il tLere were any ooubt about tLe proper appli-
cation ol tLe statutory text to responoent's system, it
sLoulo be resolveo by tLe context ano manilest pur-
pose ol tLe relevant provisions ol tLe 1970 Act. Con-
gress concluoeo tLat ¨cable systems are commercial
enterprises wLose basic retransmission operations are
baseo on tLe carriage ol copyrigLteo program materi-
al," ano tLat ¨copyrigLt royalties sLoulo be paio by
cable operators to tLe creators ol sucL programs."
1970 House Ieport S9. Il responoent useo a single
master antenna to transmit television programming to
tLousanos ol subscribers, it clearly woulo lunction as a
retransmission system sub]ect to liability unoer tLe
CopyrigLt Act. Iesponoent seeks to accomplisL tLe
same result by maintaining tLousanos ol inoivioual
antennas insteao ol one. But even il tLe statutory
language coulo bear a construction unoer wLicL tLat
tecLnical oetail exempteo responoent lrom tLe Act's
coverage, tLat surely is not tLe natural reaoing÷ano
responoent ioentilies no reason wLy Congress woulo
Lave wanteo to countenance sucL a loopLole. To tLe
contrary, tLat result woulo alloro talismanic signili-
cance to precisely tLe sort ol tecLnological minutiae
tLat Congress intenoeo to treat as irrelevant in cralt-
ing tLe 1970 Act.
TLe nuanceo scLeme tLat Congress Las createo to
govern tLe retransmission ol copyrigLteo works in
Sections 110 ano 111 ol tLe CopyrigLt Act÷incluoing
oetaileo exceptions ano a reticulateo statutory licens-
ing scLeme witL a carelully calibrateo system ol roy-
alties÷lurtLer belies any contention tLat Congress
woulo Lave regaroeo responoent's commercial per-
lormances as outsioe tLe CopyrigLt Act's purview.
Congress maoe clear tLat transmitting ¨a perlor-
80

mance or oisplay ol a work" to ¨subscribing members
ol tLe public wLo pay lor sucL service" inlringes tLe
public-perlormance rigLt, except in narrow ano specil-
ically ioentilieo circumstances. 17 !.S.C. 111(a) ano
(l )(8). Congress expressly contemplateo tLat even tLe
smallest retransmission services woulo pay royalties
to copyrigLt owners. See 17 !.S.C. App. 111(o)(z)(C)
(1970) (establisLing a minimum royalty lee lor small
cable systems); 17 !.S.C. 111(o)(1)(I) (z01z) (same).
TLe Section 111 statutory license ensures tLat copy-
rigLt owners will generally be compensateo lor tLe
public perlormance ol tLeir works by entities ol every
size tLat retransmit copyrigLteo materials to paying
subscribers, wLile ensuring tLat transaction costs (or
tLe inability ol cable operators ano copyrigLt owners
to agree on an appropriate royalty) oo not inLibit tLe
spreao ol new ano uselul mecLanisms lor broaocast
television programming to be retransmitteo to tLe
public.
7


7
TLis case ooes not present tLe question wLetLer responoent is
eligible lor a Section 111 statutory license. TLe CopyrigLt Ollice
Las previously expresseo ooubt tLat a oillerent Internet retrans-
mission service woulo qualily lor tLe statutory license. See Iegis-
ter ol CopyrigLts, 18A599?A5 .:K5 _?5X57 ,ZA56<?:6 86@ '58;N
AB:7?a8A?:6 ->A 15>A?:6 OHb '5=:7A 198-194 (June z00S),
Lttp://www.copyrigLt.gov/reports/section109-linal-report.pol. TLe
Secono Circuit reacLeo tLe same conclusion, tLougL it louno tLe
relevant statutory text ¨ambiguous." &2([F (6>" v. ?!?F (6>", 091
I.8o z7ô, zS4 (z01z), cert. oenieo, 188 S. Ct. 1ôSô (z018). WLetLer
responoent woulo ultimately qualily lor a Section 111 license
oepenos not only on tLe resolution ol unsettleo questions about tLe
proper interpretation ol tLat provision, but also on tLe manner ano
extent, il at all, to wLicL responoent's business is sub]ect to regula-
tion by tLe Ieoeral Communications Commission. See, 5"D", 17
!.S.C. 111(c)(1) (statutory license applies ¨wLere tLe carriage ol
tLe signals comprising tLe seconoary transmission is permissible
81

,,# +-?-+45; /. 01- Y2396-!0 *-;/= !--3 !/0
01+-50-! 7;/23 7/6820,!9
As tLe court ol appeals observeo, aovances in
communications tecLnology Lave leo many users to
sLilt lrom local to network-baseo metLoos lor storing
ano viewing copyrigLteo auoio ano vioeo content. !et.
App. 8ôa-80a n.19. TLe IS-ÐVI system at issue in
+8Y95!?<?:6 is one example ol sucL a tecLnology.
Clouo-baseo meoia storage services are anotLer.
S

TLese tecLnologies, ano otLers tLat may be oevelopeo
in tLe luture, may oller substantial benelits to busi-
nesses ano consumers.
Contrary to responoent's suggestion (Iesp. Br. z1-
zz), reversal ol tLe oecision below neeo not call into
ooubt tLe general legality ol clouo tecLnologies ano
services. One lunction ol sucL services is to oller
consumers more numerous ano convenient means ol
playing back copies tLat tLe consumers Lave 89758@C
lawlully acquireo. Iesponoent's service perlorms a
wLolly oillerent lunction. TLat service provioes a
means by wLicL consumers can gain access to copy-
rigLteo content ?6 AB5 E?7<A ?6<A86>5÷tLe same ser-
vice tLat cable companies Lave traoitionally provioeo.
TLere is consequently no souno reason to suppose tLat

unoer tLe rules, regulations, or autLorizations ol tLe Ieoeral
Communications Commission"); 17 !.S.C. 111(o).
S
Clouo-baseo meoia storage services are one type ol clouo com-
puting, wLicL is ¨a mooel lor enabling ubiquitous, convenient, on-
oemano network access to a sLareo pool ol conligurable computer
resources (e.g., networks, servers, storage, applications, ano
services)." !eter Mell & TimotLy Crance, National Inst. ol Stano-
aros & TecL., !.S. Ðep't ol Commerce, 1=5>?89 2;Y" $:" `HHNOJI,
)B5 $(1) 05E?6?A?:6 :E +9:;@ +:K=;A?6D z (z011), Lttp://csrc.
nist.gov/publications/nistpubs/S00-14ô/S!S00-14ô.pol.
8z

a oecision Loloing responoent liable lor copyrigLt
inlringement will tLreaten tLe use ol oillerent tecL-
nologies tLat assist consumers in Learing or viewing
tLeir own lawlully-owneo copies.
!nlike responoent's system, clouo storage services
typically permit inoivioual consumers to use tLe In-
ternet to receive private perlormances ol copyrigLteo
works 8EA57 tLe consumers Lave lawlully acquireo
tLeir own copies. TLis may occur, lor example, wLen a
consumer purcLases a oigital copy ol a movie, uploaos
it to a so-calleo ¨virtual locker" service on tLe Inter-
net, ano streams a perlormance ol tLe movie back to
Lersell in a convenient way (lor example, on a mobile
oevice). TLe commercial entity tLat proouces ano
sells tLe oigital copy must obtain a license lrom tLe
copyrigLt Loloer, since tLose acts implicate tLe exclu-
sive rigLts to reproouce ano to oistribute copyrigLteo
works. See 17 !.S.C. 100(1) ano (8). TLe consumer's
subsequent streaming ol copyrigLteo content to Ler-
sell, Lowever, is analogous to tLe private playback ol a
lawlully acquireo CÐ or ÐVÐ, lor wLicL no separate
license is requireo.
TLe precise CopyrigLt Act analysis ol sucL services
will oepeno on tLe particular oetails ol tLe service in
question. Oroinarily, Lowever, a consumer's stream-
ing ol Ler own lawlully acquireo copy to Lersell woulo
ellect a private perlormance outsioe tLe scope ol tLe
Transmit Clause. Transmissions lor personal use may
also be sLieloeo by lair-use principles. See 17 !.S.C.
107.
Ieversal ol tLe oecision below also neeo not ois-
turb tLe IS-ÐVI service upLelo in +8Y95!?<?:6. TLe
Secono Circuit's 758<:6?6D in +8Y95!?<?:6, wLicL
treateo tLe perlormance createo by tLe act ol trans-
88

mission as tLe only relevant perlormance lor purposes
ol tLe inlringement analysis, rellecteo an erroneous
interpretation ol tLe Transmit Clause. See pp. z8-zS,
<;=78. It ooes not lollow, Lowever, tLat tLe court in
+8Y95!?<?:6 reacLeo tLe wrong 75<;9A. Cl. !et. Br. 87-
8S n.ô.
In +8Y95!?<?:6, tLe cable company alreaoy pos-
sesseo tLe necessary licenses to transmit copyrigLteo
television programs to its subscribers. TLe IS-ÐVI
system simply alloweo subscribers to engage in ¨time
sLilting" by recoroing, lor later viewing, programs
tLey receiveo tLrougL tLeir autLorizeo cable subscrip-
tions. !et. App. 40a-41a (CLin, J., oissenting); see
+8Y95!?<?:6, ô80 I.8o at 1z8-1z4. TLe court in +8N
Y95!?<?:6 reasonably concluoeo tLat tLe copies so
createo were maoe by tLe subscribers ratLer tLan by
tLe cable company itsell. See ô80 I.8o at 180-188.
In 1:6C +:7=" :E -K57?>8 v. /6?!57<89 +?AC 1A;@?N
:<F (6>", 404 !.S. 417, 447-4ô0 (19S4), tLis Court rec-
ognizeo a lair-use rigLt to engage in time sLilting
wLen tLe consumer copies programs tLat sLe is al-
reaoy autLorizeo ano able to view in real time, ano
wLen tLe relevant copy is createo locally on an analog
vioeocassette recoroer in tLe consumer's Lome. TLere
is no evioent reason to reacL a oillerent result unoer
lair-use principles merely because tLe relevant per-
sonal copy is createo ano storeo remotely in oigital
lorm, as it was in +8Y95!?<?:6. Ano il tLe storeo copy
Las been lawlully maoe by tLe consumer Lersell, tLe
subsequent playback ol tLat copy to tLe consumer
tLrougL tLe IS-ÐVI system may reasonably be un-
oerstooo as a private perlormance.
Iesponoent's system, Lowever, presents very oil-
lerent issues. As Juoge CLin observeo, ¨Cablevision's
84

IS-ÐVI system 'existjeo| only to proouce a copy' ol
material tLat it alreaoy Lao a license to retransmit to
its subscribers." !et. App. ô1a (brackets in original)
(quoting +8Y95!?<?:6, ô80 I.8o at 181). In contrast,
responoent transmits to its subscribers copyrigLteo
content lor wLicL no sucL license exists. In ligLt ol
tLese oistinctions, tLe Court can ano sLoulo oecioe
tLis case narrowly by Loloing tLat responoent's re-
transmission service lalls squarely witLin tLe scope ol
tLe public-perlormance rigLt oelineo by tLe 1970 Act.
Questions involving clouo computing, IS-ÐVIs, ano
otLer novel issues not belore tLe Court, as to wLicL
¨Congress Las not plainly markeo jtLe| course," 1:6C,
404 !.S. at 481, sLoulo await a case in wLicL tLey are
squarely presenteo.
7/!7;24,/!
TLe ]uogment ol tLe court ol appeals sLoulo be re-
verseo.
Iespectlully submitteo.

JACQ!IIINI C. CHAIIISWOITH
4565789 +:;6<59
SAIANC VIJAY ÐAMII
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4565789 +:;6<59
STI!HIN S. I!WI
JOHN I. IIIIY
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#EE?>5
IÐWIN S. KNIIÐIII
*

05=;AC 1:9?>?A:7 4565789
ST!AIT I. ÐIIIIY
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MAICOIM I. STIWAIT
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BIIAN H. IIITCHII
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MAIK I. IIIIMAN
SONIA K. MCNIII
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*
TLe Solicitor Ceneral ano tLe !rincipal Ðeputy Solicitor Cen-
eral are recuseo in tLis case.