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July 30, 2004 | Sallie Hofmeister
NBC Universal signed its first major pay-TV distribution deal since completing the $14-billion merger this spring of the broadcast giant with the Hollywood studio, theme park and cable programming company. News Corp.'s DirecTV satellite unit has agreed to continue carrying USA Network and the Sci Fi channel, while also getting the rights to carry the Bravo channel and NBC's Summer Olympics programming in high-definition.
July 28, 2004 | From Bloomberg News
Grupo Televisa, the world's largest Spanish-language broadcaster, said Tuesday that it was seeking to acquire DirecTV Group Inc.'s subscribers in Mexico to become the country's only provider for satellite television service. "We would like to buy DirecTV's subscribers in Mexico but not the whole company," said Alfonso de Angoitia, Televisa's executive vice president, during a second-quarter conference call. "Hopefully, that will be during 2004, but I cannot comment on specific negotiations."
July 7, 2004 | Sallie Hofmeister, Times Staff Writer
DirecTV Group Inc. and EchoStar Communications Corp., the nation's two biggest satellite-television services, said Tuesday that they received letters from the Securities and Exchange Commission asking for information on how they count subscribers. The letters to DirecTV and EchoStar are part of the commission's investigation into how companies count subscribers. The agency also contacted cable TV providers such as Comcast Corp. and phone companies including Verizon Communications Inc.
June 16, 2004 | From Bloomberg News
Pegasus Communications Corp. sued DirecTV Group Inc., the biggest U.S. satellite television provider, and a rural telecommunications organization, claiming they sought to destroy Pegasus by stealing its business. DirecTV and the National Rural Telecommunications Cooperative this month ended Pegasus' exclusive contract to resell service to 8.4 million U.S. households in 41 states, prompting Pegasus' satellite TV unit to file for bankruptcy protection.
June 9, 2004 | David Colker, Times Staff Writer
TiVo Inc., the Silicon Valley darling famous for its time-shifting television service, saw its stock drop 14% on Tuesday after satellite television provider DirecTV Group Inc. said it had sold its 4% stake in the company. DirecTV has been a major source of TiVo subscribers, providing nearly 75% of its new customers in the last quarter, according to TiVo regulatory filings.
May 21, 2004 | From Bloomberg News
DirecTV Group Inc. was awarded $10.7 million in interest on top of the $51.5-million verdict it won last month against Pegasus Communications Corp. U.S. District Judge Lourdes Baird in Los Angeles awarded DirecTV the prejudgment interest for unpaid Pegasus invoices that a jury found totaled the $51.5 million. Pegasus markets the DirecTV satellite-television service in rural U.S. areas. El Segundo-based DirecTV had sought as much as $12.6 million in interest, while Bala Cynwyd, Pa.
May 19, 2004 | John Rice, Associated Press
The U.S. government believes Cubans should see more of America on television, and for years, Cubans have been happily complying -- cobbling together clandestine satellite systems to pick up everything from the World Series to soap operas. No longer. Most of these systems have been silenced -- not by Fidel Castro but by an American company's war on TV piracy.
May 5, 2004 | From Reuters
DirecTV Group Inc. on Tuesday posted a wider first-quarter loss, but the satellite television services company added a record amount of net new subscribers. DirecTV, controlled by Rupert Murdoch's News Corp. through its Fox Entertainment Group Inc. unit, blamed the wider loss on a charge for the pending sale of its PanAmSat satellite unit.
March 17, 2004 | From Associated Press
Hughes Electronics Corp. has changed its name to DirecTV Group Inc. to better reflect its main business running the DirecTV satellite television service. The company also has changed its ticker symbol on the New York Stock Exchange to DTV, effective today. The change is expected to be the first among many in the coming months now that the company is controlled by Rupert Murdoch's News Corp. News Corp. purchased a 34% interest in the company from General Motors Corp. last year.
March 9, 2004 | From Times Wire Reports
DirecTV is accusing O.J. Simpson of pirating its satellite television signal. In a lawsuit filed in federal court in Miami, the company demanded that the former football star pay it $20,000. Federal agents removed satellite TV equipment from Simpson's Miami house during a search in 2001. DirecTV alleges the devices were "bootloaders," used for unscrambling the company's signals. Simpson attorney Yale Galanter did not return a call for comment.
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