Sunday, November 01, 2009

TV Networks Decide DVRs are Okay After All?

The NY Times had an interesting piece about how the American TV networks have all of the sudden decided DVRs are okay with them as long as they can advertise and get TV watchers to watch those commercials…  You’re likely scratching your head now wondering what the heck are they talking about right?  Well read on.

Quote number one that knocked me off of my couch:

“The reason is not simply that more households own DVRs — 33 percent compared with 28 percent at this point in 2008 — helping some marginal shows become hits. It is also that more people seem content to sit through the commercials than networks once thought.”

I guess I’m sort of shocked to hear it’s still only 33% with DVRs.  And then to read that  people are content to sit through commercials!!!

But it’s really a good thing for those of us HTPC and DVR users who are smarter than that – those of us who don’t waste our time with most commercials because others are obviously willing to watch those commercials for us – so the networks won’t give up because of us.  This fact is emphasised by this quote from the article:

“These factors combined mean DVR ratings now add significantly to live ratings and thus to ad revenue.”

The article goes on to explain that studies show that those that watch their shows time-delayed as many with DVRs and HTPCs do, nearly half still watch the commercials even though they could simply fast forward through them…

The article on NYTimes is a very interesting one with many more statistics to check out.  It also goes into several tactics networks are using to get the viewer to watch the commercials – for instance placing something with the TV show characters in the middle of the advertising.

Check out the entire article at