Fanning the flames of controversy over Dish's Hopper ad-skipping service, the International CES awarded Hopper with Sling the "Best of Show" co-winner, along with Razer Edge.
Handing the award to the Hopper service is a direct slap at CBS, which directed its CNET unit to withdraw the honor to Hopper because the TV network was in litigation with Dish over the technology.
To further emphasize its point, the Consumer Electronics Association is not only overriding CBS, but dumping CNET as CEA's partner to run the "Best of CES" awards program.
"CES has enjoyed a long and productive partnership with CNET and the Best of CES awards. However, we are concerned the new review policy will have a negative impact on our brand should we continue the awards relationship as currently constructed," Karen Chupka, svp of events and conferences for the CEA, said in a statement.
According to numerous reports, CNET's editors were all set to give Dish's Hopper the top prize until CBS CEO Les Moonves intervened and forced CNET editors to remove Dish from consideration because CBS was suing Dish for copyright infringement.
CEA has defended Dish's Hopper technology in its lawsuit with the TV networks, recently filing an amicus brief in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.
"We believe that the Dish Hopper DVR is full covered by the Supreme Court's ruling in Sony Corp. of America v. Universal City Studios Inc. The simple fact is, making television easier to watch is not against the law. It is simply pro-innovation and pro-consumer," said CEA president and CEO Gary Shapiro.
In a statement, CNET didn't address what is turning into a never-ending controversy, nor losing the partnership with CES. "As the #1 tech news and reviews site in the world, CNET is committed to delivering in-depth coverage of consumer electronics. We look forward to covering CES and the latest developments from the show as we have for well over a decade," said CNET svp and general manager Mark Larkin.