Once upon a time, literally in another millenium, there was no Netflix. There was no YouTube. There were no streaming sites to watch whatever you wanted when you wanted. Getting depressed already?
You were at the mercy of the TV-programming stations. You depended on them broadcasting cool stuff and you had to watch it whenever they broadcasted it. If you were busy at that time, then tough luck.
This changed in the early 80's when VCRs became the hot consumer technology.
Finally you could:
- record the program
- watch it repeatedly
- watch it anytime you wanted at your own schedule and convenience
- skip (and later block) commercials
- rent movies which added yet another dimension to your freedom of program selection
So no wonder VCRs were such a success despite the limitations of degrading tapes.
The "00:00" Blinking Display Epidemic
One more quick side anecdote before we finally get to the main topic ...