Charter Communications won the first round in its defamation battle with DirecTV, with the granting of a temporary restraining order against the satellite giant that will force it to halt radio, print and direct mail ads the cable operator called misleading.
Charter filed suit against DirecTV in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri on Monday night, claiming that DirecTV has targeted its customers with misleading ads claiming the cable operator's bankruptcy will affect service.
Charter filed a pre-packaged Chapter 11 bankruptcy on March 27, but has said from the beginning that the action would have no affect on operations.
In the suit, Charter requested a temporary restraining order against DirecTV to cease running the ads, compensation from the satellite giant for any "corrective advertising," and unspecified damages.
"We are pleased that a temporary restraining order against DirecTV's clearly false and misleading advertisements was granted," Charter executive vice president and general counsel Grier Raclin said in a statement. "While we are well-positioned for competition, we believe competition should remain fair and truthful. Charter's operations are strong and our customers can feel confident that we will continue to serve them as usual, including providing them with high quality video, Internet and phone service during and after our restructuring."
DirecTV has been known for cheeky anti-cable advertising overall, including a recent batch set in a fictitious cable company's boardroom. A recent version tweaked cable over remote DVR programming.