At least the tv ads aren't planting bugs to monitor your viewing habbits :) (yet)
I've often wondered what type of information the cable companies garner from digital boxes. They can turn channels on and off remotely, reset the box remotely, make adjustments remotely. Is it too much of a tin foil hat theory to think that they know which channels are tuned in at any given time? Which programs are being recorded?
I don't think so. In fact, I'd be surprised to learn that they cannot or do not do this with the technology available. Think how much that marketing data would be worth.
I've been told that this isn't the case, and the shows you watch aren't tracked in any way, but this seems like too good of an opportunity for them to pass up. Perhaps if individual locations aren't tracked, the information as a whole is bundled together to show how many boxes were tuned to channel whatever at a particular time.
Advertising pays the bills. If people want access to free web sites with free information, they must realize that it costs money to provide that to them. I can remember when many of the cable networks were ad free, and now most have advertising. People used to get cable to get away from ads, now you can't escape them.
Advertising pays the bills. If ads don't exist or can't serve their purpose, someone/something else will have to cover the cost.