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News -- Updated Below
Fox Sues Dish Over Ad-Zapper; Dish Sues Everyone
By Swanni 

Washington, D.C. (May 24, 2012) -- Fox has sued Dish Network over its new Auto Hop feature which automatically eliminates network commercials during recorded playback.

Update at 6:15 p.m. ET: Dish has filed suit against all four major networks, asking for a ruling that Auto Hop does not infringe any network copyright and that the satcaster is not in violation of its agreement with the networks. Also, NBC Universal filed a separate suit against Dish.

The Fox suit, which was filed in Los Angeles, says the Auto Hop feature is not authorized and violates the satcaster's license with Fox. The network adds that Auto Hop could destroy its business model because viewers would not see their commercials.

Auto Hop,
which was added this month to Dish's new Hopper HD DVR, allows viewers to watch the playback of a network show without ever seeing the commercials. (Auto Hop works with the set-top's 'PrimeTime Anytime' network recordings. The Hopper automatically records all primetime shows on ABC, Fox, NBC and CBS.)

Unlike the Fast Forward button on a DVR, Auto Hop automatically removes the commercial without the viewer doing a thing.

NBC and Fox network executives last week blasted the Auto Hop, saying it was an "insult" and an "attack."


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