Here we witness an example of where profit-seeking goes too far, one of umpteen bazillion in our culture. I seem to remember hearing some flimsy factoid on tabloid tv eons ago; the cast members of Friends were each earning nearly a million $ per episode. And I remember wondering who exactly was paying for that. And where their money was coming from. I guess it was from advertising revenues? Just think of how many homeless families could be fed dinner for $1 million. Just imagine how much money the average television viewer would have in their savings or in an IRA right now, had they not fallen prey to all that advertising over the past two decades. Just imagine how much they would have saved up had they not caved in and paid for cable all that time.
Basically, this is a direct message that the sole purpose of any of us watching tv is for advertisers to make money on shit they hope we will want to buy after we see it on tv. And then the networks will make money because the advertisers are making money off us. And apparently that money will pay for programming, eventually. Entertainment, information, news? Ehhhhhh. Hey look! It's Tiger Woods and is he ever in trouble! (And that's the 'news'...)
At this point, I watch a couple PBS stations, one local station that plays movies, and will be watching the olympics. The rest of the time, it's just a time-suck and waste of banked solar energy that could be powering my computer or a kitchen appliance. I haven't paid for cable in about three years. The 'expanded basic' coverage by Comcast was costing me something ludicrous like $65/month. I mean... come on. Those were local channels and a few more PBS stations thrown in, and some cable channels I didn't watch. I was paying for decent reception on the tv, because this was before the incompetently planned and poorly executed digital conversion, and I was still buying into the myth that television is an informational resource worth forking over money to watch. $65 is two weeks of groceries in my household.
Anyway, here's the piece in the Associated Press this morning. Take a look at the URL when you load it up, btw... 'US free broadcasters in peril'. Sure. Ya gotta love that Murdoch of Faux is bitching about programming being expensive. It certainly is, when you lose advertisers by the baker's dozen because you showcase ignorant nutjobs like Glen Bleccch.
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