CBS’s CEO Les Moonves jumped on the “we love DVRs” bandwagon, making the usual network argument: DVR owners watch more TV content than non-DVR owners (From Jack Myers, via NY:MIEG). As noted a few days ago, what this argument ignores is that TV “content” and “ads” are different and that most DVR users skip ads. The usual network response to the latter point is that “skipped ads are still effective!” This sounds fine until you stop and realise that networks are arguing that you should pay the same amount for a plush 30-second ad with sound as a jerky, mute 5-second home movie.
Moonves also noted that CBS’s strategy is to distribute its content everywhere it can–Internet, DVRs, etc.–and that this distribution will enable more people to watch it. This is wise and true, and it’s one reason we’re impressed by CBS’s internet strategy. Unfortunately, the “content” and “ad” division matters here, too, so CBS (and other networks) need to devise a way to make as much money off online content as they do offline.
DVRs Good News for TV Networks? Please.
TV Hits New Height of Desperation: Touts Effectiveness of Skipped Ads
NBC: We Love DVRs!