Out of the Fog Blog

online tv: how's that working for me?

25 November 2009. Five months after analog TV died, I am still keeping up with my favorite shows... online.

by Robert Perry

Before June 12 of this year, I would watch as many English-speaking channels on my television that my apartment building's old antenna would allow: about four. I only received one channel clearly if the weather was nice. The rest I could enjoy with all the clarity of a scrambled Playboy Channel, circa 1983. You can still see and hear, but the images would stretch and the colors were psychedelic. I don't pay for TV and hope to never need to. I guess I just don't want to pay for something that has always been free. In my naïve 20s, I paid outrageous prices for basic cable only to regret it because the programming was not that entertaining. And then when you want to cancel, you learn of all the termination fees that the monopolistic cable company wants to charge you for quitting them. They get you twice: you get to pay to watch cable and then you get to pay to not watch cable. But once you bite the bullet and pay your bail, you're free again.

Commercials: there are only so many Geico and 1-800-Dentist commercials I'm willing to endure within a 30-minute period. I've heard it said that lonely people call 1-800-Dentist. They must be getting a lot of callers to be paying for so many high exposure commercials. I'm sure Julie listens to each caller's situation and arrives at a solution that can only be realized by fixing your teeth: Need a boyfriend? Stop smoking, whiten your teeth; Need a good job? Smile more, get veneers; Stressed out? Stop grinding your teeth... fix your teeth.

Online television viewing has been a breath of fresh air. Clear picture. Very few commercials. It only takes 45 minutes to watch an episode of Survivor at CBS.com. Same goes for Hulu.com: I can watch The Simpsons, Glee, Saturday Night Live, V, and The Office whenever I want after it airs on regular TV. Netflix, which I pay $15 a month for, allows me to receive three DVDs at a time in the mail and I can keep them as long as I want without a late fee, plus I get unlimited streaming of select movies at Netflix.com. And I haven't even mentioned YouTube. So, I'm doing pretty good so far without a television. Better, actually. I'm sure that my bliss won't last forever, though. I've been hearing on the radio that networks want to charge for online content. Maybe Julie can help.

©2009 Chromozoa

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TV on the street

Photo source: oceanfrog, Flickr.com

On June 12, 2009, some people took the bumpersticker advice and killed their TV.

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