This excerpt taken from the DTV DEF 14A filed Apr 21, 2008.
What are the elements of compensation? Why does the Company choose to pay these elements of compensation? How does each element and the Company's decisions regarding an element fit into the Company's overall compensation objectives and affect decisions regarding other elements?
The key elements of compensation for the executive officers are a base salary, an annual bonus paid in cash and a long-term incentive award denominated and usually paid in shares of Company stock. The executive officers are also eligible for certain other benefits and perquisites that are intended to be a part of a competitive compensation package that provides health, welfare, savings and retirement programs comparable to those provided to employees and executives at other companies in our industry. Some elements of compensation are related, meaning that the value of one element affects the value of another element. Increasing base salary increases target bonus opportunities, savings, pension and disability benefits. Increasing bonuses also increases pension and savings plan benefits, but long-term incentive awards are excluded from both of these plans.
The purpose, key characteristics and target pay levels of each element of compensation are in the following table.
administered and governed at all times by the official plan documents and the descriptions in the proxy statement of these plans are qualified in their entirety by reference to the applicable document. The Company reserves the right to amend, suspend or terminate the plans completely or in part at any time and for any reason. Stockholders may request a copy of a plan document by contacting the Corporate Secretary as provided on page 68.