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Discussion in 'TiVo Series 1 - UK' started by rwtomkins, May 9, 2011.
Someone with deeper pockets may already be suing them?
Talk to any firm of Solicitors and they will say you have a 100% chance of success in litigation. After handing over several large cheques you find it becomes 80%, 60%, 50%, "would you like us to make this go away because you could lose" and "we really think you should settle out of court". It is how they make their money. Rule 1 is never take it personally against the other parties legal team as they are only doing their job and have families and Ferrari's to support, stay focussed on TiVo.
Keep going rwtomkins, this is going to be a fun ride!
Their Lifetime Service letter to me dated February 2003 is signed clear as day by Mike Ramsay, Chief Executive Officer but the company shown at the bottom of the letterhead (which has the Tivo Guy logo in the top right of it) is "Tivo UK Registered Office: Carmelite House, 50 Victoria Embankment, Blackfriars, London EC4Y 0DX. Registered in England number:4056501". I would tend to believe it is likely that Companies House records will show that at the time of the letter Mr Ramsay was a board director of Tivo UK Ltd.
So I am sure any attempt to claim that jurisdiction only applies in a California court on a product sold out of UK retail chain shops and where calls for customer support went to their agents (Sky) at a UK call centre are likely to fall on stony ground with the judge and that you could successfully argue that the attempted changes to the contract are an unfair contract term on Tivo's part. They obviously hope to get it out of the UK small claims court system as the cost of continuing with the claim then becomes unaffordable for you. As Tivo UK is a wholly owned subsidiary of Tivo Inc their attempts to claim that that their choice of making it dormant and leaving it with no assets absolves it of all responsibility for your contract also seems to be wholly bogus.
Was this clause also in the original terms and conditions or only in their revised terms and conditions. If the latter then its clearly an unfair contract term once again. If it was in the original Lifetime Service contract then you may have a problem.
You may also want to draw the current state of your claim to the attention of Peter Young, a UK journalist who expressed a previous interest in following this whole story in the US Tivocommunity Coffee House forum section thread started by Spitfires in his post at:-
This seems to be the journalisted entry for Peter Young. Perhaps he is even a Tivo S1 owner with a Lifetime Service contract?
^ Yes the jurisdiction issue really shouldn't be a problem - the original paper-only (back in the days when th'internet was a wee lad) agreement which came inside the "Start Here" guide gave jurisdiction as "England and Wales"; to move that to California would clearly be an unfair change and would be stricken out I'm sure.
Well the issue I was most concerned about has come up. They claim the deal was made with TiVo US. Pete's point aside if tjis turns out to be true then AFAIK you can still take an off shore company to the Small Claims Fast Track but it would be getting more complex and there is the risk the fast track judge will refuse to consider it under that route.
But it is as TCM says, curious that they have spent serious money on a defence
And also curious why they tried to remove the English Law requirement so very recently
I wonder: Is it worth moving off AltEPG back to Tivo just to add some weight to the number of existing users?
I was wondering about that but I am getting rather hooked on the sXXeXX annotations for series used by AltEPG.
Pretty sure you can't - that came up much earlier in one of these threads:
Irrespective of what Pete77's letter may say, all the service agreements stipulate the contract is with TiVo, Inc. Whether that carries any weight in UK law is for the courts to decide.
Very interesting comments, guys, and some good advice too. Thanks very much! And keep it coming!
If anyone can point me to a beginner's guide to contract law, it might help me to get to sleep at nights.
Oh yes, and Pete77, I'll take a look at that Peter Young suggestion - thanks very much. BTW Mike Ramsay was indeed a director of TiVo (UK) Ltd.
I'm in the US, but spitfire's quote from the paper agreement seems clear.
This agreement explains the terms and conditions that will apply to your use of the TiVo service and constitutes a legally binding agreement between you and TiVo Inc. ("TiVo").
Guess that cuts both ways. The fact that TiVo (UK) Ltd is a dormant company with no assets means nothing, but you would probably have to file with the US courts to get anything out of TiVo Inc.
P.S. It looks like ReplayTV users are now in the same boat.
Did anyone ever find a bank/credit card statement showing who they paid their money to when they bought their lifetime subscription? I haven't found mine yet but I still have a few more boxes to go through! I'm interested to know whether it shows TiVo UK, or TiVo Inc, or just TiVo. I know the money was actually collected by TiVo (UK) Ltd but the more evidence I can pile on, the better.
somebody did, earlier in the post i think. will have a look in a min.
That'll be me ( page 1 ) - unfortunately the statement just says "TiVo" no hint of uk or inc
I have my bank statement dated 4 Dec 02 which shows I made the transaction with a debit card. The line reads:
20NOV CARD PMNT 15NOV TIVO 199.00
But the transaction was in sterling and not dollars. As Tivo Inc had no UK presence why did it set up Tivo UK if it was not to take subscriptions etc for the UK Series 1 service in the UK in sterling............
A look back at Tivo UK Ltd's accounts for the period 2000 to 2004 would undoubtedly be instructive.
US companies can take payments in pounds, and vice versa.
It's all pretty irrelevant, as the bit of the contract even I agree would immediately get struck out is the California law part.
imho the contract was clearly with TiVo Inc but you'd have to guess they are bankrolling TiVo UK's defence. Why go to the lengthy defence they have if they could have just replied "not us, try TiVo inc?"
Suggests TiVo Inc could be nervous
I guess the next step depends what the goal is. Can't speak for rwtomkins but if it was my case I don't want the money. I want TiVo Inc to turn the service back on even if it has to be because they fear the alternatives.
If you make a claim using small claims court track it has to be to get financial compensation. If you want them to maintain the service you would need an injunction in a different (and much more expensive) court.
That's the direct route
IF an award is given and IF TiVo Inc didn't pay up then I wouldn't want to be a senior exec of TiVo visiting the UK