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DISH Disappointed with CBS' Interference with CNET's "Best of CES" Awards


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#26 OFFLINE   tampa8

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Posted 11 January 2013 - 02:18 AM

Based on what exactly? A press release from Dish Network? That's it? A black eye...right...


You really don't see the ramifications of this? If it was just CBS itself involved in this decision, it would be more understandable, as long as they disclosed their decision. But to force politics on what was an independent testing site that happens to be owned by them, that does what we thought was independent testing is not understandable.
Here is a very small sampling of what others - no not just me, not just Dish is saying. You can try to make this somehow the fault of Dish, but those that have an idea of what this means know differently.

http://www.buzzfeed....worst-nightmare
("This confirms that fear, at least for CNET's reporters — that there is a profound difference in product journalism and actual journalism, to the point that the former might not even be in the same genus as the latter. Good service writing, unglamorous as it may be, demands integrity too. Your authority as someone telling people what to buy is determined first and foremost by your motivations.

CNET has a roster of stellar writers and reporters who do great journalism every single day, and this isn't their fault. But it gives critics of the tech media a leg to stand on, and will be felt deeply — in the gut — across the tech media. ")

http://www.theatlant...spot-ces/60866/

https://plus.google....sts/AnPtDvmHwec

Edited by tampa8, 11 January 2013 - 02:30 AM.


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#27 OFFLINE   tampa8

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Posted 11 January 2013 - 02:20 AM

I see what you did there...

I don't think there is a problem per se with CBS owning CNET... the problem is when CBS steps in and tells CNET to be objective with someone that CBS has a problem with.

IF CNET operates on its own, and no one can prove any lack of objectivity... then I don't think it would be an issue.

But now that the worm-can has been forced open? CBS has essentially invited people to take a look at all things CNET does and question whether or not CBS has done this before or will do this again.

That is going to be a tough thing for CNET to recover independent objective credibility going forward.


Nailed it.

#28 OFFLINE   Art7220

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Posted 11 January 2013 - 06:46 AM

This happened before. CBS wouldn't let a 60 Minutes report on the tobacco industry air. Even came out in a movie. Granted, the CNET affair won't be as big an issue.

#29 OFFLINE   SayWhat?

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Posted 11 January 2013 - 07:06 AM

Not the same thing. Editorial control over their own broadcast programming is one thing. Strong-arming a subsidiary with a reputation for impartial reviews and testing is something else.
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#30 OFFLINE   acostapimps

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Posted 11 January 2013 - 01:16 PM

I'm a Directv subscriber but damn that is so wrong in so many ways, it's technology that matters not some type of dispute with a network

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#31 OFFLINE   AntAltMike

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Posted 11 January 2013 - 03:11 PM

I remember back in the C-band days, when trade magazines used to give annual "Best ____" awards for hardware items, and the winner of every award was whichever company bought the most advertising in that jounal.

#32 OFFLINE   Reaper

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Posted 11 January 2013 - 03:34 PM

...what does dish networks owner get out of constantly biting the hand that feeds him without the networks he has no content to sell?


According to Forbes, Charlie is worth $9 Billion, and is the 38th richest person in the US. He sounds like a real dick to work for, or with for that matter, but it's hard to argue with success.

Source: http://www.forbes.co.../charles-ergen/

#33 OFFLINE   P Smith

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Posted 11 January 2013 - 04:03 PM

I don't get with the H2 "invention" praise ...

#34 OFFLINE   James Long

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Posted 11 January 2013 - 04:35 PM

... without the networks he has no content to sell?

There are still plenty of networks to sell ... even many of the ones who "hate Charlie" end up making a deal. 14 million subscribing customers are hard to turn away when you want to make a profit. (Not that some providers have not made that choice.)

Somehow despite the gloom and doom predictions of some people (not you but others) DISH manages to thrive ... make a little money and keep moving forward.

#35 OFFLINE   SayWhat?

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Posted 11 January 2013 - 06:09 PM

Just one day after CNet named the Dish "Hopper," a new TV recording system that's drawing rave reviews in the tech press, to an awards shortlist, the site's parent company stepped in and nixed the accolade. Because of a legal battle between CBS and Dish over the Hopper's ad-skipping technology, CBS laid down a ban: CNet won't be allowed to even review Dish products, much less give them awards.


http://money.cnn.com.../dish-cnet-cbs/

As more and more media companies are snapped up by larger corporations - Disney buying ABC or AOL buying Engadget, for example - there is a concern that the legal or financial interests of those parent companies might cloud the news coverage of the outlets they own. While CNET insisted that its news coverage will remain unbiased, the blackout on reviews is troubling to many, as they are largely reviewed by most tech sites as part of the objective, reporting process. Surely, this is not the last lawsuit in which CBS or other media-owning companies will become involved, so where does it stop?


http://www.pcmag.com...,2414184,00.asp

CNET, one of the more widely read tech-review sites, just got kneecapped by its corporate parent, CBS (CBS).

Earlier this month, this magazine called Dish “the meanest company in America.” That may still be true, but in this case, the company’s meanness is in service of consumers. As FDR is alleged to have said about Nicaraguan dictator Anastasio Somoza Garcia, “He’s a son of a bitch, but he’s our son of a bitch.”

Oh, and with its heavy-handed squashing of further CNET coverage, CBS appears to be gunning for the No. 2 spot on that list.

http://www.businessw...ish-dvr-lawsuit
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#36 OFFLINE   tampa8

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Posted 14 January 2013 - 12:29 PM

Greg Sandoval reviewer at Cnet has resigned because their trust now has been comprimised. (Too hard to link from my cell phone sorry) As some immediately recognized this is a pretty big story and honestly CNET may have problems going forward.

#37 OFFLINE   SayWhat?

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Posted 14 January 2013 - 01:36 PM

One of many articles appearing:

The discord between CBS and its tech site CNET is getting loud enough to carry beyond the realm of the super-nerds at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. Outrage first bubbled up last week when CBS wouldn't allow the DISH Network's Hopper with Sling DVR to compete for CNET's top award at the trade show because CBS and DISH are currently in court over the technology, which allows viewers to skip over the commercials the network needs to make money. Now the other shoe is dropping — it turns out the Hopper had already been voted the best product before CBS intervened — and one CNET writer has already quit because of the shadiness.

"Sad to report that I've resigned from CNET. I no longer have confidence that CBS is committed to editorial independence," tweeted digital media reporter Greg Sandoval today. "CNET wasn't honest about what occurred regarding Dish is unacceptable to me." He added, "We are supposed to be truth tellers. I believe CNET's leaders are also honest but used poor judgement."


http://nymag.com/dai...s-meddling.html

Article goes on to say (as do others) that the Hopper would have won the award.
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#38 OFFLINE   SayWhat?

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Posted 14 January 2013 - 01:40 PM

But the problems may go deeper than that. The Verge has now learned that the facts of the case are somewhat different than the story CNET and CBS had previously shared with the public. According to sources familiar with the matter, the Hopper was not simply an entrant in the Best of CES awards for the site: it was actually chosen as the winner of the "Best of Show" award (as voted by CNET's editorial staff).

Apparently, executives at CBS learned that the Hopper would win "Best of Show" prior to the announcement. Before the winner was unveiled, CBS Interactive News senior-vice president and General Manager Mark Larkin informed CNET's staff that the Hopper could not take the top award. The Hopper would have to be removed from consideration, and the editorial team had to re-vote and pick a new winner from the remaining choices. Sources say that Larkin was distraught while delivering the news — at one point in tears — as he told the team that he had fought CBS executives who had made the decision.

Apparently the move to strike the Hopper from the awards was passed down directly to Larkin from the office of CBS CEO, Leslie Moonves. Moonves has been one of the most outspoken opponents of the Hopper, telling investors at one point, "Hopper cannot exist... if Hopper exists, we will not be in business with (Dish)."


http://www.theverge....fter-hopper-win
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#39 OFFLINE   Stewart Vernon

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Posted 14 January 2013 - 04:05 PM

As the onion gets peeled... I think some of us nailed it from the beginning... CBS thought it would be bad for their lawsuit if the Hopper won a best-in-show... and so they killed it.

Ironically, though... Hopper winning best in show as a CNET award from a CBS-owned company actually would have been a PLUS for the CBS lawsuit as they could say that they are not oppressive and anti-progress, just that they want to protect their business. The neutrality would have gained them favor in court.

Now, however, the smackdown at CNET will no doubt be used by Dish in court against CBS to show "look what CBS will do if you don't stop them, they will force out anything they don't like with unfair business practices" and so forth.

This will be bad for CBS going forward in that suit... it will be far worse for CNET credibility, though.

I think employees of CNET, however, will have a chance to go elsewhere and flee the sinking ship IF they choose to do so, because they can be respected for not knowing what to do in the moment but coming forward to say how they were not in favor of what CBS forced them to do.

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#40 OFFLINE   fudpucker

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Posted 14 January 2013 - 04:46 PM

Let's say the head of CBS says "OK, we don't want Dish carrying any CBS programming if the keep this device on the market" - can they do that? Or is it up to the local network carriers alone?

#41 OFFLINE   scooper

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Posted 14 January 2013 - 06:40 PM

Well - that question has a couple of answers -

#1 - For local stations that CBS is the owner / operator - they certainly can do that if they want - the other networks can do the same thing IF THEY want.

#2 - For AFFILIATES of CBS network (and other affiliates) - CBS can't directly direct that. However - CBS could apply pressure to them to make it difficult for the affiliates to continue to be carried by Dish or to keep their CBS affiliation.

It comes down to dollar$ and cent$ - Until the networks say their programming can't be carried by Dish - you'll know that they're just blowing smoke - i.e. it's worth more money to them to keep that programming in front of our eyes.
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#42 OFFLINE   sat01

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Posted 14 January 2013 - 06:48 PM

sorry if this was posted already.
but apparently several CNET employees quit b/c of this

http://news.yahoo.co...-213434265.html

edit. yes, i see someone did mention it already

#43 OFFLINE   Stewart Vernon

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Posted 14 January 2013 - 08:24 PM

Let's say the head of CBS says "OK, we don't want Dish carrying any CBS programming if the keep this device on the market" - can they do that? Or is it up to the local network carriers alone?


That is essentially what CBS seems to be threatening via lawsuit... that IF they can't win the suit to get Dish to drop the features... then in the next contract they will try to negotiate it out.

As Scooper said... CBS-owned affiliates could easily be dropped if CBS wishes to not negotiate. non-CBS-owned LiLs would be harder for CBS to control, though they could pressure them to play hardball with Dish.

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#44 OFFLINE   James Long

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Posted 14 January 2013 - 08:55 PM

Don't forget that CBS is Viacom ... The last national renewal for Viacom channels on DISH (2010) did not go well. I do not know which year their last "multi-year agreement" runs through, but CBS/Viacom tied their owned & operated broadcast channels with their satellite channels. If they decide to withhold programming it will be more than just a few major market's locals.

Also don't forget that Viacom went dark on DirecTV (2012) ... so they are willing to leave a provider while negotiating a deal. But they will eventually come around.

Hopefully the issue will make its way through the courts before the next renewal talks commence. I would hate to see CBS/Viacom try to avenge a loss in court by pulling the channels ... but killing the Hopper is a non-starter.

#45 OFFLINE   kenglish

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 10:15 AM

Had CBS said, "We won't award the "new and innovative, Share your DISH programming with a Neighbor box, until it's lawsuits from DISH Network and DirecTV are resolved, Charlie would have applauded their actions.

If it's a great invention, it can get an award next year, after the lawsuits are settled.

#46 OFFLINE   JosephF

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 10:34 AM

The biggest joke to me is that this product was even up for best of show.

I mean come on, the Hopper has been out for awhile now (and it is debatable if it is even the best Whole Home DVR) and Sling has been around for years. You're telling me that a merging of these two products is the best new product out there!

Give me a break :nono2:

#47 OFFLINE   SayWhat?

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 10:55 AM

I don't really see the logic in a provider voluntarily depriving themselves of millions of viewers because a few might use a new device to skip some commercials during some programs.
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#48 OFFLINE   Curtis0620

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 11:30 AM

I don't really see the logic in a provider voluntarily depriving themselves of millions of viewers because a few might use a new device to skip some commercials during some programs.


Advertisers pay for those viewers to see their ads. Prime Time is the big time for advertisers. So they will reduce their ad fees and to make up for it, the networks will charge DISH higher re-trans fees.

All for just a FEW Commercials skipped.

Seems worth it to me.
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#49 OFFLINE   BrianB

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 11:40 AM

The biggest joke to me is that this product was even up for best of show.

I mean come on, the Hopper has been out for awhile now (and it is debatable if it is even the best Whole Home DVR) and Sling has been around for years. You're telling me that a merging of these two products is the best new product out there!

Give me a break :nono2:


CNET specifically called out the functionality of being able to transfer shows to a tablet for offline and away from home viewing.

Sorry if I missed it, but didn't see this link posted yet from the editor in chief: http://news.cnet.com...ds-cnets-story/

#50 OFFLINE   tsmacro

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 11:57 AM

This really seems to have worked out pretty badly for CBS, the person that made this decision should be fired. I mean if the Hopper with Sling had won that award, outside of a small group of techie types, very few people would've ever even known it had won in the first place and it would've been quickly forgotten. Now this has become a big brouhaha and CBS has managed by this action to not only heap all sorts of negative publicity on themselves but also gave more publicity to Dish and their Hopper than would've ever occurred otherwise. :nono2:


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