CES announced DISH’s Hopper with Sling technology built-in to be the “Best of Show” 2013, which is a great honor it shares with winner the Razer Edge for the international CES show. The decision came out following the exposure that CNET was compelled to move the Hopper away from consideration by its parent company CBS who is presently involved in legal proceeding with DISH against the functionality of Hopper.
Together with the approval of the award, CES also indicated that it will launch an RFP looking for a new strategic partnership for the “Best of CES” awards, because it no longer has enough confidence in CNET, doubting whether the relationship with CNET will continue to be beneficial for the CES brand.
Karen Chupka – CEA SVP of Events and Conferences – said in the press conference: “CES has enjoyed a long and productive partnership with CNET and the Best of CES awards. However, we are concerned the new review policy will have a negative impact on our brand should we continue the awards relationship as currently constructed. We look forward to receiving new ideas to recognize the ‘best of the best’ products introduced at the International CES.”
The source of the legal dispute between CBS and DISH is the function of the DISH Hopper with Sling that it can record and replay programs within a 24 hour window after its broadcasting without advertisements. CEA along with other tech groups put up a brief in support of DISH last week, since the company is obviously longing for standing itself off the editorial decision made by CNET and its parent firm.
Gary Shapiro, on behalf of CEA, came out in strong support of the DISH Hopper in a statement in the press conference:
We are shocked that the ‘Tiffany’ network which is known for its high journalistic standards would bar all its reporters from favorably describing classes of technology the network does not like. We believe that the DISH Hopper DVR is fully covered by the Supreme Court’s ruling in Sony Corp. of America v. Universal City Studios Inc. The simple fact is making television easier to watch is not against the law. It is simply pro-innovation and pro-consumer.
The incidental consequence for CNET has already issued in the quit of Greg Sandoval from the workgroup. He handed in his resignation, quoting a lack of confidence in CBS’s promise to editorial independence as his reason.