More than a decade after its introduction, TiVo is putting its trademark thumbs-up and thumbs-down buttons to good use. Well, "good" is strictly a matter of opinion in this case: Zatz not Funny! reports that the DVR maker is testing a feature on next Monday's episode of NBC's The Voice that will allow participants to vote on contestants' performances right from their remotes. The show already relies on viewers casting their votes from a variety of sources including SMS on Twitter, so the concept is a good fit for the trial.

It's not open to everyone

It's not open to everyone — Zatz notes that it requires a specific software build to be installed on the TiVo box, and only certain owners have been recruited (of course, it also helps if you like The Voice). Interestingly, the voting doesn't have to happen in real time — the note being sent to testers says that they should watch it on Monday night "if possible." You can also use thumbs-up and thumbs-down more than once per performance, so button mashing is seemingly encouraged if a song goes really well or really poorly.

TiVo users represent a relatively small fraction of the overall US television market — it counts 3.9 million subscriptions globally as of its most recent earnings call — but considering the ease of use here, TiVo voters could end up casting an outsized shadow on whatever it is they're helping to decide.