DVR's improve TV ratings

Digital Video Recorders have been attacked by many in the entertainment industry as being harmful to TV ratings and advertisers.   Just like VCR's were supposed to ruin the video industry.  In general, the entertainment industry historically has tended to fear and fight every new technological development. Turns out that the reality is that DVRs actually add significantly to live ratings, and have helped some otherwise marginal shows become hits.

From the New York Times:

...television network executives have fallen in love with a former tormentor: the digital video recorder.

The reason is not simply that more households own DVRs — 33 percent compared with 28 percent at this point in 2008 — helping some marginal shows become hits. It is also that more people seem content to sit through the commercials than networks once thought.

These factors combined mean DVR ratings now add significantly to live ratings and thus to ad revenue.

Also see commentary by the EFF, and Cory Doctorow of Boing Boing.