Originally Posted by archiguy
My memory is a little fuzzy on it, but wasn't there a device (Replay TV?) in the early days of DVR's that would allow you to do that very thing? Weren't they basically sued out of existence by the content providers?
Yes, but when one reads about the court case
, it looks like ReplayTV didn't lose the case but it was so expensive that they ended up filing for bankruptcy, and the entertainment companies then dismissed their lawsuit against ReplayTV, so precedent wasn't established.
Tivo uses a different method: in certain markets, humans mark the start and end of commercial breaks for prime-time shows, and later that evening that information is available for devices that support Skip Mode. However, the way I read the Electronic Freedom Frontier summary, I don't see anything that would prevent the entertainment companies from suing Tivo over the same issues.
In the back of my mind I seem to recall that there was a product that wouldn't record commercials, but that was quickly shut down because it involved altering copyright content rather than altering the playback of copyright content, the skipping on playback essentially being an automation of the viewer FF past the commercials, but the commercials are still available in case the viewer wants to see them.
Why would one want to see the commercials? Speaking as one who normally FF past commercials, sometimes a commercial will catch my eye and I'll back up to see that commercial, sometimes because the commercial is entertaining, sometimes because the commercial looks like it is for a possibly entertaining movie or show.
There have been several commercials on Syfy that had led me to at least try some of their shows, sometimes enjoying them (e.g., Killjoys, Dark Matter), sometimes not (Dominion, Reactor).