Judge denies Comcast TRO request against DIRECTV


A federal judge in Illinois has denied Comcast’s request for a temporary restraining order (TRO) against DIRECTV in an attempt to stop the company from advertising its best offer of the year, one where new customers receive the popular NFL Sunday Ticket package at no extra charge for the 2011 season.

Comcast has sued DirecTV, accusing it of misleading consumers. In a complaint filed 8/3 in the U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois, Comcast claimed that DirecTV is poaching customers with false promises about its NFL Sunday Ticket package.

Comcast says DirecTV has been recruiting customers by appearing to offer them a chance to watch every Sunday NFL game outside their local markets for free. However, Comcast says the campaign (online, TV and radio), doesn’t disclose that the offer requires customers to sign up for two-year contracts with big fees for early termination.

DirecTV denied the allegations and plans to defend itself.

“We’re pleased the judge recognized Comcast’s veiled attempt to limit our ability to compete in the marketplace and denied the TRO,” said Jon Gieselman, SVP/Marketing and Direct Sales for DIRECTV. “We’re happy to go head-to-head with Comcast any day on whose service is superior, so we look forward to competing in the marketplace rather than the courtroom.”