A remote control system for a television receiver includes a remote control transmitter with keys for initiating a scan type channel selection operation and a memory for storing a list of preferred channels and non-preferred channels. During a scanning operation the non-preferred channels are passed over (i.e., "skipped"). The battery of the remote control transmitter advantageously also maintains the contents of the "skip" memory so that it may be volatile. So that the same type of channel selection is available locally at the television receiver itself scan keys and an associated skip memory are also incorporated with the chassis of the television receiver. Apparatus is provided to automatically program the local skip memory with the contents of the remote skip memory so that a user does not have to program both skip memories.