Saturday, December 13, 2008

TiVo vs. TV

The digital video recorder (DVR) throws network TV executives into panic mode, as NBC moves Leno to 10 p.m.:
NBC framed the decision in terms of competitiveness and cost-effectiveness, because it defuses the risk of Mr. Leno’s move to another network and saves untold millions of dollars a year. But it also reflects the increasing irrelevance of the network schedule.
The irrelevance is partly because of digital video recorders, the bane of many a television executive. Viewers in the 28 percent of homes with DVRs are recording programs at 8 and 9 p.m. and playing them back later in the evening, hurting the 10 p.m. hour. Of the 10 prime-time programs that gained the biggest audience from DVR usage this year, none were on at 10 p.m.
The biggest gainers from DVR viewership were dramas. According to statistics on time-shifting released by Nielsen Media Research on Friday, the NBC series "Heroes" benefited the most from DVRs, with a 35 percent increase in its audience after seven days of time-shifted viewing. The new Fox drama "Fringe" experienced a 26 percent increase, and the ABC series "Lost" had a 25 percent increase.
I stopped watching network TV years ago, and I certainly never watch cheesy TV dramas. Life is too short.

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