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On TiVo and Commercial Bullies - The Life and Thoughts of Zach

Oct. 7th, 2003

03:36 am - On TiVo and Commercial Bullies

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Date:October 7th, 2003 12:09 pm (UTC)
See my view is that TiVo can only reduce the overall cost of commercial advertising and change the model as they become less effective.

At the moment, TiVo has a tiny tiny install base so there is no way that it is significantly impacting the effectivenes of commercials. However if it becomes widespread it could be the end of commercial television.

And...oh BOO HOO, the networks tell us that that would mean the end of our favorite shows like Friends and ER because they couldn't afford to make them without commercials. So that would mean...oh my god....maybe some of the big commercial networks would abandon their broadcast stations and there'd be lower cost of entrance for community and public non-profit broadcasters. Maybe the commercial outfits would go to a pay-per-view on demand model or a subscription model like cable (but cheaper because of increased supply and constant demand).

Public interest groups use the dominant advertising methods when they can afford it. If the dominant advertising methods change then the interest groups will change their tactics as well. I can only think that an overall increase of democratic non-commercial access and cheaper access to commercial broadcasting can benefit public interest groups.

I'm all for the viewing media consuming popuation declaring that THIS (commercial free) is the way they wish to watch television and letting The System/Market panic and figure out what the heck it's solution to that constraint is going to be. I'm not going to be chained to an obligation to watch commercials, we know there are other ways to fund television production (the PBS model, the IMC/public access model, the HBO model, and the PPV model).

And anyway, there will always be sports. No one wants to watch a sports game delayed by several hours. They want to know who wins at the same time as the rest of the world.

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