DirecTV can’t claim service superiority, says judge

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DirecTV can't claim service superiority, says judge

Washington (DC) – The TV ads fronted by William Shatner and Jessica Simpson for DirecTV will no longer grace many U.S. airwaves, as part of a ruling from a federal court judge in a case that was brought forth by Time Warner, alleging that DirecTV’s “superior quality” claim was false advertising.

The ruling only applies to markets where Time Warner Cable service is offered, which is most of the country thanks to last year’s acquisition of Adelphia and Comcast.  The ads specifically claimed that DirecTV’s digital offering is better than cable, though it is known that the satellite provider compresses its quality, marginally, to offer more bandwidth for additional channels. 

“we will continue to aggressively market our better overall picture quality, which is permitted by the court’s opinion.  It’s obvious their strategy is to fight with us in the courts since they can’t compete with our superior product in the marketplace. We are confident we will prevail on both fronts,” an unnamed DirecTV spokesperson was quoted as saying in an Associated Press interview.

Time Warner filed the suit last year, saying its HD picture was “exactly ther same resolution” as DirecTV.  The judge denied an additional request from Time Warner that would have forced DirecTV to air an ad that specifically recalled its advertising message.