CCIA Calls Copyright Ruling A Victory For Innovators

BY CCIA Staff
September 19, 2013

Washington – Those who like to skip TV commercials and those making the devices that help them do it won a key court victory Wednesday. A New York southern District Judge dismissed an argument by ABC that DISH Network’s commercial hopping feature on the company’s DVR violated ABC’s copyright.

This victory comes on the heels of a federal appeals court ruling in July that blocked an attempt by Fox to cut off customer access to this same DISH commercial hopper. While DVRs have allowed customers to fast forward through commercials, the DISH device lets them skip the commercial altogether with the touch of a button.

The Computer & Communications Industry Association had filed an amicus brief in the Fox case, saying the plaintiffs’ “cramped view of fair use would hobble not just DVR technology, but also may threaten a wide range of new private copying technologies.” DISH is a member of CCIA.

The following can be attributed to CCIA President & CEO Ed Black:
“This latest copyright victory is important not just for DISH Networks, but for the Internet ecosystem. It’s encouraging to see the court is able to shut down attempts to abuse copyright law in a way that was never intended — to protect an old business model from the challenges of competition and innovation.”

“This whole issue is further proof that when incumbent companies try to trap customers and keep them from watching the content they want on the device they want, other innovators have room to enter the market to meet that customer demand. It will be important to watch for other attempts to use laws inappropriately to block innovation and new business models with DVRs as well other cloud computing innovations.”

For more background on this case, please see CCIA Public Policy & Regulatory Counsel Ali Sternburg’s blog post for DisCo on the issues behind an earlier lawsuit on the commercial hopping device:

http://www.project-disco.org/intellectual-property/072413-dish-hopper-win-is-a-victory-for-innovation-new-business-models/

Related Articles

Unvetted Copyright Measures In Spending Bill Concern CCIA

Dec 22, 2020

Washington — Congress has wrapped several controversial copyright measures into a must-pass end of the year spending bill.  The intellectual property part of the legislation includes the CASE Act, the Trademark Modernization Act, and the Protecting Lawful Streaming Act. While the Computer & Communications Industry Association doesn’t oppose the language of the streaming proposal, it…

CCIA Response To Proposed Digital Copyright Act

Dec 22, 2020

Washington — Senator Thom Tillis, R-NC, has introduced a discussion draft of a controversial copyright bill that reads like a Christmas wish list for Hollywood and big content companies, and takes cues from contentious copyright reforms in Europe. Among other sweeping changes to the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), the bill increases the role of…

Senate Judiciary Considers Controversial Copyright And Section 230 Legislation

Dec 10, 2020

Washington — Controversial legislation combining flawed copyright and Section 230 bills was considered by the Senate Judiciary Committee today before being withdrawn. The Computer & Communications Industry Association has serious concerns with S. 4632 (the Online Content Policy Modernization Act), which is a bill containing S. 1273 (the Copyright Alternative in Small-Claims Enforcement (CASE) Act…