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Fox Sues Dish Network Over Digital Recording Services

By William Launder Of DOW JONES NEWSWIRES NEW YORK -(Dow Jones)- News Corp.'s (NWS, NWSA) Fox Network on Thursday sued satellite-TV operator Dish Network Corp. (DISH), accelerating a standoff within the television industry over Dish's new digital recording service. In a complaint filed Thursday in California district court, Fox accused Dish Network of violating copyright laws and a license agreement with the launch of its PrimeTime Anytime service, which Fox referred to in the complaint as Dish's "own bootleg broadcast video-on-demand service." News Corp. owns this newswire. The service is available to Dish subscribers on its new "Hopper" device, which has been harshly dismissed by broadcast executives in recent weeks as an attempt to undermine TV's traditional advertising business. A feature on the device allows viewers to bypass commercials that have been previously recorded digitally. "Dish is undermining legitimate consumer choice by undercutting authorized on-demand service and by offering a service, if not enjoined, will ultimately destroy the advertising-supported ecosystem," Fox lawyers wrote in a complaint. Fox further accused Dish's "Sling Adaptor" of violating copyright law and Fox's agreement with Dish. Fox is seeking a court order to prevent Dish from unauthorized distribution or reproduction of its content, as well as damage compensation and legal fees. A spokesman for Dish Network wasn't immediately available for comment. -By William Launder, Dow Jones Newswires; 212-416-3412; william.launder@dowjones.com

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