AT & T pulls suit against Verizon ads

Wed, 12/02/2009 - 7:15am
The Associated Press

NEW YORK (AP) – AT&T Inc. is giving up on a lawsuit that sought to force competitor Verizon Wireless to pull its "There's a Map for That" commercials.

In a document filed by AT&T attorneys, the lawsuit was "dismissed without prejudice."

AT&T filed the lawsuit in federal court in Atlanta last month, saying the Verizon ads amount to deceptive trade practices. AT&T said the ads, which show the range of AT&T's "3G" network coverage for high-speed data, could give viewers the impression that AT&T has no service at all outside of those areas.

Instead of demanding the ads be taken off the air, AT&T asked the court to prohibit Verizon from displaying maps depicting blank, white space where it does not have 3G coverage.

Verizon refused to recall the ads, but did superimpose the phrase "voice & data service available outside 3G coverage areas" at the end of the advertisements.

After a judge declined to provide AT&T with a temporary restraining order on Verizon's ads, the carrier fired back at Verizon with ads of its own touting the virtues of its EDGE network. It recently completed substantial 3G upgrades in the greater San Francisco Bay Area and Seattle.

On Wednesday, AT&T and Verizon filed a joint notice to withdraw the case. They are also abandoning a court case in New York. In that case, each company claimed that ads by the other – with claims like "most reliable 3G network" and "more bars in more places” – were false.

– Wireless Week’s Maisie Ramsay contributed to this report

More Broadband Direct 12/02/09:
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•  Comcast seeks FCC OK for Cimco buy
•  Shop 'til you drop: CMC, icueTV team up on t-commerce
•  FCC requests input on PSTN switch to IP
•  Genachowski calls for spectrum, USF reform
•  Cisco nears completion of Tandberg takeover
•  RGB, OpenTV demo ad overlay at CableLabs interop
•  AT&T pulls suit against Verizon ads
•  Basic cable rate hikes seen nationwide
•  Canadian ad battles intensify
•  Broadband Briefs for 12/02/09



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