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Cablevision Battles the Big Media's Myopia

Reuters reports that Cablevision defended its proposed network-based digital video recording service, saying it could create revenue for Hollywood studios that have filed lawsuits to stop it.

Some film studios and TV networks, including The Walt Disney Co. and CBS Corp. say the service would break copyright agreements by allowing subscribers to store programs on the cable operator's computer servers. The studios say Cablevision would effectively be retransmitting programs. Cablevision has said its plan is legal since customers would still control the content being recorded, as with existing home-based digital video recorders (DVRs).

"We actually think it's a big opportunity for content owners and advertisers as well as the distributors," Cablevision chief operating officer Tom Rutledge told a Sanford C. Bernstein investor conference in New York. "I think content owners should embrace this."

Rutledge said network-based DVRs would give owners of programming easier access to what viewers have recorded and allow for more focused marketing campaigns, with advertisers able to update ads on programs that a user has recorded. Rutledge also said network-based DVRs were as legal as DVRs in the living room.

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