NBCU Settles With Dish Over AutoHop

NBCUniversal has become the last of the big four TV network groups to reach an agreement with Dish Network settling all litigation around AutoHop -- the big prime-time commercial-skipping function.

Under NBCU’s agreement, Dish subscribers can now skip prime-time commercials of a new show episode a week after that episode has aired. As originally conceived, users could skip prime-time commercials with AutoHop on the day the show aired.

This comes as part of a new overall NBCU carriage deal. Overall, Dish has about 13.4 million subscribers.

In 2012, the big four networks started up litigation against Dish because of the commercial-skipping technology that would allow users to automatically skip all prime-time commercials on the four broadcast networks.

TV networks said AutoHop technology infringed on their copyrights, which also breached respective carriage deals with Dish. At the time, Dish said this was just an automated feature for consumers for something they were already doing.



NBCU's settlement/carriage deal involves the NBC and Telemundo TV stations and cable TV networks including USA, Syfy, Bravo, CNBC, and MSNBC.

Fox settled its deal with Dish Network back in February of this year. It also agreed to a seven-day delay before users could use AutoHop. CBS deal with Dish settled in December 2014, also for a seven-day delay.

Disney-ABC made its deal to drop litigation in March 2014. Unlike other week-long delay deals, Dish users can use the AutoHop feature on new episodes of shows after three days.

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