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Fox and NBC: Dish's commercial-skipping DVR 'a strange thing to do' at best, 'an insult' at worst

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Fox executive Peter Rice has said that Dish's decision to offer commercial-skipping in its Hopper DVR was "a strange thing to do" and that his company was "still evaluating it." Previously, NBC's Ted Harbert also complained about the system.

dish logo ces 1020
dish logo ces 1020

Customers may be impressed by Dish Network's commercial-skipping Auto Hop feature on the Hopper DVR, but at least two networks aren't so happy. In a press call, Fox entertainment chairman Peter Rice said that adding the option to cut out commercials for broadcast television was "a strange thing to do." Rice didn't go so far as to openly condemn the Hopper, though; instead, he said that Fox was "still evaluating it." NBC's Ted Harbert was more direct. In a similar conference, he claimed that the new tool was "an attack on our ecosystem" and "an insult to our joint investment in programming."

The Auto Hop feature, which was added a few days ago, edits out commercial breaks with a single button for some broadcast programming from ABC, CBS, NBC, and Fox. It's meant to be easier to use than similar fast-forwarding or editing tools on other media platforms, although it only works after a day-long waiting period. So far, ABC and CBS have remained silent on the tool.