By Art Holliday
ST. LOUIS (KSDK) - St. Louis has been called the best sports city in America. Now, the Gateway City has a new distinction. St. Louis leads the nation in time-shifting: recording TV shows to watch at a later date.
The Nielsen Company, a global information and measurement company says St. Louis leads Cleveland and Sacramento when it comes to time-shifted TV viewing.
"It does surprise me but I contribute to that because I record 'Scandal' and 'Joel Osteen' every week," said Judy Tyler, while watching her granddaughter play in the water at Citygarden.
"We have two kids and we get from nine to ten to watch television each night," said kitchen designer Louis Rybacki, who especially likes skipping the commercials on his DVR. "Forty-two minutes in an hour, and sometimes I can squeeze in a 30 minute show after the hour long. It's made it more convenient for us."
Eric Rothenbuhler is the dean of the Webster University School of Communications. He says digital video recorders have started a revolution and the TV viewer is winning.
"The revolution of the DVR is the way it changes the audience experience, allows audiences to choose when where and how they watch their television, and the way in which that upsets the business model of television," said Rothenbuhler.
In other words, when time shifters fast-forward through all those expensive commercials, somewhere there's a network TV executive cringing. Meanwhile, DVR users love being in charge of the way they watch.
"Record it and watch it whenever I get ready," said Tyler. "In the middle of the night, early in the morning, whenever I have a chance, at my convenience."
If there's a downside to the shows you record on your DVR, it's the spoiler alert: trying to avoid anyone about to reveal crucial facts about the plot.
"They know the rule," said Tyler. "You cannot discuss 'Scandal' until everyone has seen it."
"There was another series we watch," said Rybacki, "and a friend of mine posted something on Facebook and it's like 'Ooooooh! I got three more episodes.'"