Most television viewers welcome any opportunity to skip commercials and watch their favorite programs without interruption. As a result, some companies try to offer a service that can provide such an experienced. On May 30, a federal judge in New York issued a preliminary restraining order against Fox that prevents the company from bringing a breach of contract lawsuit against Dish Network.


The breach of contract suit relates to Dish Network’s AutoHop service. This service gives Dish users the ability to skip commercials while watching television. The restraining order could be lifted at a hearing scheduled for July 2.


Does Dish’s AutoHop service amount to a New York breach of contract? The terms of the agreement between Dish and Fox will have to be assessed. Dish, however, asserts that while its service allows television viewers to skip commercials, they were already able to do so using remote controls and DVRs. Fox alleges that giving viewers such control threatens “the future of free, over-the-air television.”


In order to win in action asserting breach of contract in New York, Fox would have to demonstrate the following:

  • There was an enforceable agreement between the two companies
  • Fox upheld its end of the contract
  • Dish breached the agreement by allowing viewers the opportunity to skip commercials
  • Fox sustained damages as a direct result of the AutoHop service


To learn more about breach of contract and other New York business litigation matters, contact a New York breach of contract attorney today at (888) 497-3410.

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Elias 01/01/2016 12:00 AM
At least the NY courts are showing some good sense. I just don’t understand how FOX can expect to win at this. I’m not seeing less commercials using Auto Hop than I was before, the process is just automated. It’s the difference having a dishwasher and washing dishes by hand; either way the dishes get clean, but it’s just easier to have it done for you. Now, I was chosen by Dish from a pool of employees to beta-test the Hopper, and I’ve gone through every bit of the Auto Hop. I love it, and so does my family. I can only hope this restraining order holds.
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