Remember how, back in the Seventies, experts warned that while the future might allow us to watch FIFTY channels instead of three, we couldn’t expect those fifty channels to be LIKE the three?
Well of course, they were RIGHT. There’s a LIMIT to how much MONEY people are prepared to spend on their viewing pleasure – and the amount of TALENT available to entertain us.
And put low budget and lack of talent together and what do you get? Crappy “lifestyle” programmes and “reality TV”, THAT’S what!
Then there are all of those “speciality” channels – giving us biographies, history, etc. But whilst they look attractive when you FIRST buy your dish – or cable link, or whatever – once you’ve SEEN the stuff on their “carousel”, you discover the amount of NEW programmes they put on every month, is no more than the number of programmes of that type that WOULD have popped up in a month, on your original THREE channels.
Then SPORT. There’s LOADS of THAT – except most of it is DRIVEL. Stuff that wouldn’t have MADE your original three channels.
And 24-hour news and financial channels – again, showing the same stuff over and over and OVER again.
Finally, stuff you’d NEVER have watched back in the old three-channel days. Shopping channels, makeover channels – even CATWALK channels!
And since most setups only allow you to decode ONE channel at a time, you NEED all the damn REPEATS these channels have, to enable you to see what you want. With terrestrial, you could split your RF signal into various TVs – and VCRs, for later viewing.
But do not be TOTALLY down-hearted. There is ONE saving grace. Tivos, PVRs, etc. Like VCRs, these machines will record one channel while you watch another. This, given all those repeats, allow you to build up a “library” of non-topical programmes, while watching the topical stuff, live.
It still requires PLANNING though, if you have four people in the house – all of whom inevitably want to watch something DIFFERENT. Which is where THIS writer CAME IN. In My Day, one could only afford ONE TV – and most of the evening was taken up ARGUING about which channel to watch.
In the Eighties, we had four TVs and two VCRs and happiness ruled. But NOW, we’ve come full circle. Thankgawd the kids have gone…