Appeals Court Rules EchoStar Violated Copyright Law

Law360, New York (May 25, 2006, 12:00 AM EDT) -- Settling a score between network broadcasters and EchoStar Communications Corp., a federal appeals court has ruled the satellite TV provider violated federal copyright law by misusing a compulsory license scheme intended to benefit rural households.

The ruling, from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit, was a victory for the group of networks, which launched a battle against EchoStar in 1998 over its allegedly illegal transmissions, that they argued eroded the value of their copyrighted material.

Ultimately, the appeals court found that the U.S....
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