written by john lewis

Quitting TV

David Seah hits the nail on the head when it comes to TV addiction:

“it’s just so easy to get into the groove and watch a half-dozen documentaries and dramas. I tell myself It’s OK…you’re learning about human psychology! You’re learning about WWII! You’re getting new ideas that spark new ideas!”
“If I want to go get new ideas, I should go out and meet ACTUAL PEOPLE in INTERESTING PLACES I’ve NEVER BEEN TO.”

Update: My own TV habits are probably somewhat different but I can empathise with the quote made above. For me now, the only time the TV goes on seems to be the weekend. Otherwise there is far more interesting stuff elsewhere (in books, on the net, outside, etc). I could never justify spending money on a Sky subscription either.

I used to be someone who would lose several hours to the telly each night but I found that that changed dramatically when I moved to Wellington. For a start I was spending more time at work which meant there was less time to spend on other personal things, and well, TV just started to suck.

I have a problem with the broadcast model that TV operates under. I don’t want you to tell me what I can watch and when. I want the control, not you. I can’t remember how many times I’ve missed a show and then grabbed it (illegally I might add) from the net to catch up. You’re missing out on those advertising dollars because you are choosing not to be flexible for me.

One thing I’m finding extremely interesting is how much time I’m spending on You Tube and indeed other online video sites. This is time I’m spending at the cost or detriment of TV. If you look at the content on the two models, it is inherently different. On You Tube, its content is generally low quality, low budget and short but it also holds content that would never make it to broadcast TV.

Consider this small video of Steve Jobs presenting to his local city council. This would never justify making it to broadcast TV and yet it is an excellent example of Steve Jobs’ presentation abilities, something many people would learn from and find useful (myself and over 17,000 other people included).

Broadcast TV is on a hiding to nothing…

Posted in: Productivity, Rants


There are 2 responses to Quitting TV

John Daniel Trask
Tuesday, 20th June 2006 8:27 am

So will you be chucking out the TV John? :)

– JD

Tuesday, 20th June 2006 10:45 am

Cheers for the comment JD. After I published this entry I thought it would be a good idea to go back and talk about my own TV habits. It’ll appear later on today :)



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