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Old 01-05-2013, 06:55 AM   #1
nrnoble
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Tivo suggestions has started recording infomercials

For reasons unknown, Tivo suggestions has started recording "infomercials" occasionally, such as in the middle of the night and\or early morning. And its for products I would never buy, such as women's beauty\healthcare products.

What is strange about recording infomercials is that I truly hate them. I never watched or record them, and I give then three thumbs down when I stumble on them. I even have deselected all shopping channels.

I have been using Tivo's since 1999 and this has never happened until recently. I am hoping that Tivo has not made deals with infomercials media companies to use Tivo suggestions as a method to, more-or-less, download infomercials to Tivo units when there is no recording conflicts.

Note: I am not referring to when Tivo records its promo channel\programming, which is a series of short promos\ads, and does not appear in under Tivo Suggestions.
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Old 01-05-2013, 07:11 AM   #2
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You may want to review your thumbs. Could a friend have pranked you? My kids gave Dora three thumbs up and triggered tons of preschool suggestions.
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Old 01-05-2013, 07:26 AM   #3
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You're being haunted by the ghost of Billy Mays for blaspheming infomercials.
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Old 01-05-2013, 10:39 PM   #4
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Do these infomercial recordings show actually show up in the Now Playing list once they've been recorded?

Do you have suggestions enabled?
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Old 01-05-2013, 11:56 PM   #5
nrnoble
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Quote:
Originally Posted by unitron View Post
Do these infomercial recordings show actually show up in the Now Playing list once they've been recorded?

Do you have suggestions enabled?
They show up in the Suggestions folder.

I have "Suggestions" enabled. I could disable Suggestions but I do like about 25% of the suggestions that are recorded.

Overall its not really an issue of great concern because I can delete or ignore these recordings like I do with other suggestions that do not interest me. I just hope that TiVo is not recording them because of some deal they have made as a means to increase revenue.
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Old 01-06-2013, 12:15 AM   #6
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They would scarcely be recording them as a deal to reduce revenue.

I don't think I've ever enabled suggestions on any of the TiVos I own, so I don't know if this has been going on very long or not.

Is it possible that whatever keywords Suggestions is using are being triggered by the descriptions of these shows, rather than it being a nefarious money-grubbing plot?
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Old 01-06-2013, 12:32 AM   #7
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I don't think TiVo has anything to do with this. If so, that would be a new low for them.
I've had infomercials record in Suggestions before (very rare). It depends on the guide data that is supplied with the infomercial. Is there any key words in the infomercial guide description that correlates to anything else that you have recorded?
I would say just continue to 3 thumbs down the infomercials and see what happens.
Anything you set to record automatically gets a thumbs up. Make sure to add extra thumbs up to things you really like.
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Old 01-06-2013, 12:53 AM   #8
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I've seen this happen as well on insufficiently trained Tivo's.

In fact, a new tivo, out of the box, with no season passes, no wishlists, no watched programs, no thumbs, no feedback at all - will develop a infomercial fetish.

Infomercials have little to no metadata associated with them (last time I looked). No director, no category, no language, no age rating... I suspect it's a quirk of the rating engine that given insufficient feedback, tends towards a selection of things it doesn't think you don't like.

Similar things would happen with a tivo only given negative feedback. (ie, thumbs down everything you don't like, but don't thumbs up anything you do like). It would decide you hate all common categories (language: English), and some damn strange stuff would bubble to the surface. While this has been tweaked over time and is no longer the problem it once was, I'm sure you could still trend it in a strange direction.

If it bothers you, a good round of tumbing up/down might be in order.
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Old 01-06-2013, 01:57 AM   #9
nrnoble
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Quote:
Originally Posted by unitron View Post
They would scarcely be recording them as a deal to reduce revenue.

I don't think I've ever enabled suggestions on any of the TiVos I own, so I don't know if this has been going on very long or not.

Is it possible that whatever keywords Suggestions is using are being triggered by the descriptions of these shows, rather than it being a nefarious money-grubbing plot?
I brought up the possibility partly based on the fact that past TiVo's online surveys I've gotten in email were more interested in my spending habits than how I use my TiVo. I found that strange. It just made me wondered about TiVo's business priorities.
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Last edited by nrnoble : 01-06-2013 at 12:05 PM.
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Old 01-10-2013, 08:34 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by jrtroo View Post
You may want to review your thumbs. Could a friend have pranked you? My kids gave Dora three thumbs up and triggered tons of preschool suggestions.
+1. I had a similar problem, with a different type of program; figured out that I really was using the thumbs incorrectly =)
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Old 01-10-2013, 11:54 AM   #11
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Another thumb problem can arise from hitting the record button- it always gives a single thumbs up to that program.
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