Dish Files To Trademark 'TV Everywhere'

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Dish Network has filed for trademark protection on "TV Everywhere," which the satellite operator apparently is seeking to use for its forthcoming Slingbox-enabled set-top box.

Dish has established a "TV Everywhere" section of its Web site at www.dishnetwork.com/tveverywhere that references its remote DVR programming features and includes a link to Sling Media, the maker of the place-shifting Slingbox devices EchoStar bought for $380 million. The satellite company originally expected to offer the "SlingLoaded" ViP 922 receiver this spring, but now plans to debut it before the end of the year.

A Slingbox-based service, however, cuts out content owners by letting a subscriber rebroadcast live TV or DVR content over the Internet to a PC or mobile device. By contrast, the broader industry has used the TV Everywhere term to describe services offered via distributors in partnership with programmers to potentially increase advertising revenue.

As outlined by Time Warner Inc. CEO Jeff Bewkes, for example, "TV Everywhere" encompasses Web-based video services available only to pay-TV subscribers provided through cable, satellite or telco TV operators in cooperation with programmers. Dish representatives would not say whether the company is developing a service along those lines.

Comcast, Time Warner Cable, AT&T, Verizon Communications and DirecTV each have TV Everywhere-style services in various stages of development with programming partners, and Canadian cable operator Rogers Communications plans to launch one later this month.

EchoStar, meanwhile, has been pitching cable companies on a Slingbox-based set-top box to offer "TV Everywhere" services to customers in the way the industry leases DVRs. Dish Network and EchoStar, which sells hardware and satellite services, became separate entities in January 2008, but the DBS operator remains EchoStar's single biggest customer.

Dish filed the "TV Everywhere" trademark application with the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office on Sept. 17. Among other things, the filing covers "television transmission services" as well as "providing access to electronic sites for remote access, recording, and viewing of television programming via personal computers, mobile phones, personal digital assistants, and laptop computers."

The satellite operator's trademark application also refers to "peer-to-peer network computer services, namely, electronic transmission of audio, video and other data and documents among computers" and "rental of set-top boxes and digital video recorders for use with televisions."

According to the USPTO's trademark-search database, as of Monday Dish's application had not yet been assigned to an examining attorney.

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