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Dish's Hopper Had Actually Won Best of CES
Before CBS Executives Had a Really, Really Stupid Idea
by Karl Bode 12:42PM Monday Jan 14 2013
Last week we noted that CBS executives had shot themselves in the public relations foot by forcing CNET to avoid reviewing or giving awards to Dish's Hopper ad-skipping DVR, given that CBS is currently in court trying to destroy the technology for being too convenient.

While previously it was suggested that Hopper was only in the running for a CNET CES award, The Verge notes that Hopper had actually won CNET's best of show award before some upper level CBS executives decided to get involved:
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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.
CBS has magically ensured not only that people are talking about Hopper far more than if it had just won a CNET prize, but that they'll also be talking about how idiotic and anti-consumer CBS is for injecting itself into CNET's editorial standards. CNET writer Greg Sandoval has meanwhile resigned over the whole affair. "CNET (not being) honest about what occurred regarding Dish is unacceptable to me," said Sandoval. "We are supposed to be truth tellers."

70 comments .. click to read

Recommended comments

Heavy Artillery For The Little Guy
Tulsa, OK

2 recommendations

The Media is beholding to Corporate Masters and $$$

This is part of the reason our nation continues the downward spiral.

So called news organizations are actually propaganda arms for profit and the interests of their Corporate masters. This is why unethical, immoral and illegal behavior isn't exposed and the public gets to instead read about the Kardashians or Justin Bieber's new hair style or about other political red herrings and disinformation rather then see these corporations and their Government friends put to task. In the case of CNET you see a small example at work where $$$ triumphs integrity.

It's the modern American way.
"Fascism should more properly be called corporatism because it is the merger of state and corporate power." -- Benito Mussolini


Tuscaloosa, AL

2 recommendations

reply to FFH5

Re: CBS suing Dish;makes sense to not play up product suing over

said by FFH5:

CBS is suing Dish over the Hopper product. It makes sense that a CBS subsidiary not play up the product involved in the lawsuit. Whether Cnet likes it or not they are owned by CBS and have to follow corporate policy. Cnet touting the Hopper would prejudice CBS's case in court against Dish.

No, it wouldn't prejudice anything. The technical merits of a product don't impact its legality. If, say, I built a piece of hardware that I could attach to any ATM and then withdraw all the cash from said ATM while also disabling the security camera would be a technical marvel, but it'd be illegal as hell.

Plus, if it was sound editorial practice for a news organization not to report on any company involved in a lawsuit with their management, then any organization would have an easy way to avoid being reported on in a negative light. Don't want the New York Times to report that your company just dumped a load of toxic waste into the ocean? Then sue them for libel related to something they published in the past. Doesn't matter if there's any merit, since all you're after is shutting them up until the latest story dies down.

Let's just call this what it is. CBS didn't want the Hopper to win that award, especially not from one of their subsidiaries, so they ordered that subsidiary to vote again. Did they have the right to do that? Sure, but it was a scuzzy, underhanded move, and it's going to hurt them more in the end. I've read CNET stories since the mid-'90s, and, although I've sometimes disagreed with them, I've never thought they were intentionally biased...until now, and I really can't see myself visiting them very often anymore as long as they're owned by CBS. I doubt I'm the only person who feels this way.