CNET editor Greg Sandoval told Twitter earlier today that he's quitting the venerable tech news site over parent company CBS's apparent demand that the publication drop Dish Network's ad-skipping Hopper feature from consideration for its "Best of CES" awards.
The site covered this year's edition of the Consumer Electronics Show extensively, and one of the products it examined most closely was Dish's Hopper. Dish made some noise at CES when it announced that it plans to extend the use of the Slingbox technology (which Dish acquired a few years ago) to include connected devices. In other words, Dish Network subscribers can skip video ads on their iPads and smartphones, as well.
CBS, among others, is unhappy about the degree to which allowing consumers to skip ads will devalue their commercials.
Thus, CNET took the product off their list of "best of show" finalists. The decision was justified with a terse note at the bottom of the page: "The Dish Hopper with Sling was removed from consideration due to active litigation involving our parent company CBS Corp. We will no longer be reviewing products manufactured by companies with which we are in litigation with respect to such product." Dish responded with an angry statement lambasting CBS for interfering with CNET's editorial integrity.
This morning, Sandoval tweeted:
Hello all. Sad to report that I've resigned from CNET. I no longer have confidence that CBS is committed to editorial independence.— Greg Sandoval (@sandoCNET) January 14, 2013
I am not disgruntled. CBS and CNET were great to me. I just want to be known as an honest reporter. Thanks everyone for reading me.— Greg Sandoval (@sandoCNET) January 14, 2013