Michael Elkin, managing partner of Winston & Strawn's New York office, was quoted in "Networks Hammer Dish Over Ad-Skipping DVR," featured in E-Commerce Times on May 25, 2012.
CBS, Fox and NBC, three of the four major U.S. television networks, have filed suit against Dish Network as a result of the provider's new DVR feature, Auto Hop, which automatically removes a program's commercials. The networks argue that Auto Hop violates copyright law by directly tampering with the broadcast. The networks argue that it is not within Dish's rights to tamper with broadcasts for its own economic gain.
"Permitting consumers the ability to eliminate the viewing of paid advertisements threatens the very business model of the television industry establishment," Michael Elkin told E-Commerce Times.
If the case goes to court, it could be a long, drawn-out battle.
"Like many cases in the digital media space these days, this will be a novel application of the copyright laws and decisions to a consumer-driven distribution of entertainment," said Mr. Elkin. "Not for the faint of heart."