Dish Chalks Up Court Win for the Ad-Skipping Hopper

Court denies Fox request to halt service

Dish Network won another court victory in its fight with broadcasters over its ad-skipping Hopper that's reviled by broadcasters. On Monday, the U.S. District Court for the central district of California denied Fox Broadcasting's request for a preliminary injunction against the Hopper's DVR place-shifting features.

The decision follows last week's ruling by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals that upheld a lower court's ruling denying ABC a preliminary injunction to block the Hopper's ability to skip ads.

Monday's ruling wasn't all bad for Fox. Although Judge Dolly Gee didn't halt the service, she also found that Fox could prevail at trial on the merits. "We disagree that the harms caused by Dish's infringing services are completely compensable by damages, and as a result we are looking at all options. We will file a response in due course," Fox said in a statement.

Dish is keeping score of its victories against broadcasters. "Today's decision is the fourth in a string of citories for consumers related to our Hopper Whole-Home DVR platform," Dish evp and general counsel Stanton Dodge said in a statement. "Dish is pleased that the court has sided again with consumer choice and control by rejecting Fox's efforts to deny our customers' access to Dish Anywhere and Hopper Transfers features."

Broadcasters hate the Hopper because they say it threatens the ad-supported business model abuses distribution agreements. Introduced last year, all the major networks have filed lawsuits against the prime-time ad skipping DVR, and despite setbacks, vow to keep fighting.


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