The constant battle between impatient television viewers and disgruntled providers got a shot of adrenaline today, as Walt Disney's two biggest channels have inked a deal with Cox Communications that is sure to simultaneously appease marketers and enrage customers. Reportedly, Cox will now begin to "disable the fast-forward feature that allows viewers to skip ads" in both ABC and ESPN video-on-demand, meaning that users who choose to view older programming via Cox's VOD channels can smash the FF button 'til their heart's content and get nowhere. Of course, users who actually set their DVR to record said content at its normal airing time are still free (for the moment, at least) to blaze right on through those annoying blips commercials, which means that you should probably become a lot more disciplined in your DVR scheduling if you belong to Cox. The worst (or best, depending on perspective) part is the precedent that this sets, as now the door is gaped wide open for more and more providers to grab the reigns of our DVRs and dictate just how far we push the notion of timeshifting. [Warning: Read link requires subscription]

[Via TechMeMe]

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Cox disables ad skipping on ABC and ESPN VOD content