As consumer electronics companies float ideas that would use technology to restrict DVR users from skipping commercials, a larger debate is growing in the TV programming business about who will underwrite the steep costs of developing new shows -- advertisers or viewers. Early data from TiVo show that users skip 70% of recorded commercials, which in turn makes the possibility of restricting end-user remote controls -- part of a developing industry standard -- increasingly desirable to networks, advertisers and consumer electronics manufacturers.

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