I got a tivo a few years back & have had a dvr of some kind ever since. I now have dish so I use theirs which is a good one but not quite as good as the tivo. The biggest plus is of course the time shifting factor. But the ability to skip past commercials is a close second. I keep wondering how the advertisers are going to spend their money in the future on ads. I very rarely even see an ad now but I still know more people without dvrs than I do people who do have them. So the ads are still being seen by a large percentage of people. But at some point the scales will tip and advertisers will no longer be able to justify the huge dollars they give to have their products displayed only to have them skipped over by the consumer. If 50% of people have dvrs then the value of advertising time is greatly diminished.
So what do companies do to avoid being fast forwarded into the red? Well they can place ads in sporting events which are more enjoyable if watched on time instead of the next day when you may have already found out the score. Also they could use the new media as a venue to put ads inside. Instead of paying for ad space during Lost (a popular show on ABC which I hate since they pretty much make up the story line as they go. If you are hooked on it, get out while you can!) a company could pick a popular blog or podcast that covers Lost to advertise with. Not only are people less likely to fast forward a podcast to avoid commercials, they are more likely a super fan of the tv show thus more apt to support a product that supports their show. Another thing I see happening is tv channels placing ads on top of the show in the corner like they do with their network logo (ex. NBC placed in the bottom right corner of all their shows). Or they could place “crawling text ads” 24 hours per day. However it comes about I do not know, I just know it change is on the way.