Here's a weird PSA that bashes cable

Originally published at: Here's a weird PSA that bashes cable | Boing Boing

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I remember this. I also remember skipping school the day Superchannel (or was it FirstChoice) began broadcasting. The first movie was Star Wars and I wasn’t going to miss it.

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It portends to things to come, bad things.

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The number of services that I pay for in hopes of keeping up with the conversations at the water cooler is crazy.

Yeah, I gave up on that. It wasn’t worth the stress mentally or on my finances. I’m good with not keeping up with the latest in entertainment these days. Maybe one day I’ll catch up them.

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Yes, yes it is.

Keeping up with watercooler chat? That is an exercise in futility these days. There’s so much stuff being produced now that it’s completely senseless to try to watch anything unless you really want to.

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Film distributors and exhibitors really saw every stage of television’s development as an existential threat. Meanwhile, movie theatres are somehow still in business decades after TVs entered American living rooms en masse.

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Not only that, prior to the pandemic, global box office revenue was the highest it had ever been.

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Some of what is warned in this Negativland bit did come true-- when I was a kid you could watch almost all Yankees and Red Sox games on local TV stations, now they are all on dedicated sports cable channels.

[ETA: I’m curious if other ‘smaller’ markets still have local MLB teams on broadcast TV.]

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Rotting old corpse that i am, i was there (then). cable-tv was sold to address three issues: (1) too many commercials (2) too few channels (back then like only three!), and (3) lousy reception (ugly antennas!). Seriously, for almost a year there were no commercials, then [loud farting sound], more commercials than ever before. Then came “57 Channels and Nothing On”, (we never saw channels of nothing but commercials coming). …So the reception of endless ads remains pretty good (when the cable doesn’t go out) as the monthly bills steadily climb [approaches cable with shears in hand as a sad asymptote]

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In truth, I could really survive with just Netflix at $20 a pop, but I choose to lump on other services because – well, WWE isn’t going to watch itself. In any event, cable packages were exorbitantly priced and still are. I know I’m still making out like a legal bandit, no matter how much I complain.

So, is this your only stance? No concern over internet neutrality or data harvesting?

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I love pro-wrestling, but even I don’t watch WWE. I only put them because saying New Japan Pro Wrestling might be a little too niche for a non wrestling audience. Lol

This ad is oddly prophetic, but not in a way that its creators intended. The widespread availability of cable and its broad array of information sources was the primary excuse president Reagan used to gut the FCC’s Fairness Doctrine. This act, which recent news suggests was orchestrated by Rupert Murdoch, enabled Fox News, Rush Limbaugh et al to broadcast disinformation and propaganda all across the land.
I doubt it would even be possible to estimate the amount of damage this has caused.

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