Skipping TV Ads

SkipItDo you hate those annoying TV ads where hucksters bellow at you or prattle repetitively? How about those inane ads for gold and silver investing by that B-list actor? Do you record shows on your DVR just to be able to fast forward or hop over them? If yes, then prepare for a nasty shock. This defense may be coming to an end.

I think it is our right to fast forward over recorded shows, choosing to watch only those ads that interest us. Obviously advertisers disagree and being able to skip ads calls into question the entire commercial TV business model. And now they are fighting back.

Cable companies and purveyors like Netflix and DirecTV are beginning to implement technology that locks out fast forward and direct skipping. I saw evidence of that yesterday on my Cox cable service. I was watching a show that I had recorded and a notice popped up saying that fast forward was disabled, and sure enough it was. I don’t know how far Cox has gone with this, but I believe that Comcast and TimeWarner are going forward aggressively on it.

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