12
Dec/06

Time Warner Sues DirecTV Over Star Trek And Football Ads



Satellite TV provider DirecTV ran two types of ads. One was targeted at local markets and made claims regarding the availability of that market’s football team’s games on DirecTV and the alleged unavailability thereof on satellite. The other made claims as to the superiority of DirecTV’s high definition signal over cable (see the Star Trek version above). Time Warner protested and DirecTV agreed to stop making certain claims. It then, In Time Warner’s view, continued to make those claims in new commercials. Time Warner has now filed a complaint in the Southern District of New York against DirecTV alleging false advertising and breach of contract.
One aspect of the case will turn on the phrase “. . . for picture quality that beats cable . . .” which Time Warner alleges refers to its own HDTV signal and not its conventional cable signal. As providers’ HDTV signals are apparently equivalent in quality, TW is in the unfortunate position where to prove its case, it must emphasize the fungibility of the quality of its HD service.
The complaint was too large to upload – if you want a copy, email me.

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