That's a pretty typical MPEG gradient artifact. However, there's no way to know if that was already present on the video MSNBC appears to be playing. Your screen grab looks like some B-roll. In which case we probably ALL would have seen that. It seems half of the video the news nets air comes from cell phone cams, Skype or something compressed for easy uplinking. Garbage in, garbage out.
The reason I suggested ESPN-HD is because it's generally live sports and studio shows (or a replay of same) and that would remove third-party video, film and other causes from the mix (highlights notwithstanding).
I see that garbage all the time on CNN courtesy their source video. The live studio shots of the anchors are fine.
Which model of D* receiver are you using?
Try again with something that's live sports or a live studio shot.
Walking the fine line between jaw-dropping and a plain ol' yawn.