from the dumb,-protracted-waste-of-money dept
In 2014, CBS and Disney both settled their suits, with Dish agreeing to cripple the ad-skipping technology for new programs, in exchange for streaming licensing for use by Sling TV. Fox continued to press on, and while Fox won on some contract issues regarding whether Dish could offer recorded content outside the home, it lost on most of its copyright claims -- settling with Dish earlier this year.
That only left Comcast NBC Universal, which held out longer in part because Dish (and Sling TV) are direct competitors to Comcast's own cable TV services, but also because the two sides were engaged in a larger debate over retransmission contracts. But even Comcast NBC Universal agreed to settle with Dish this week, finally bringing the legal fisticuffs to an end. As with the other settlements, Dish had to agree to cripple some of its ad-skipping DVR functionality if it wanted to not only settle the case, but get a hold of NBC content for streaming video:
"On Thursday, the last of the lawsuits, the one that was filed by NBC, was stipulated for dismissal. The parties have reached a settlement that will limit ad-skipping until after seven days from a show's broadcast airing. According to a statement from an NBCU spokesperson, "NBCUniversal and DISH Network have reached an agreement resulting in the dismissal of all pending litigation between the two companies, including disputes over the AutoHop and PrimeTime Anytime features."That puts to bed a multi-million-dollar legal battle that raged for four years -- all because Dish made it easier for consumers to do something they were doing anyway. And while it's great this particularly stupid saga has finally been put to bed, it's obviously only a matter of time before broadcaster lawyers find some new, consumer-friendly advancement they'd prefer didn't exist.