Note: This column represents the opinions
of the writer and as such, is not purported as fact|
What are our TV broadcasters up to?
Sunday, the one night of the week when it's been worth watching the "New Look"
Prime TV has just been
decimated for no apparent reason.
"Enterprise", the latest incarnation of the classic Star Trek theme has been
axed half-way through its first season and the TNG series has been moved
to very late on weeknights. Quite frankly it's a pain in the backside and
lots of people have been bitching about it.
The other free to air (FTA) broadcasters are no better -- seemingly starting
and stopping series without reason and becoming infatuated with those horrible
genres of modern television: Reality TV and voyeurism (Big Brother, Survivor,
What's more, we're being barraged with more advertising than ever. Even TV1's
"Low Advertising Zone" in the evenings is a joke -- requiring viewers to sit
through interminably long runs of boring, repetitive, mind-numbing advertisements
at all-too regular intervals.
But there's always Sky TV right?
Ha! Forget it.
The Movie Channels are filled with more repeats than ever before, the best
movies and sports having being progressively siphoned off onto new channels
that cost extra, and the latest addition to the channel line-up is filled with
crappy repeats of series from local FTA TV that never rated well the first
But wait -- there is a solution...
It doesn't appear to be common knowledge amongst parts of the TV viewing
community, but that box in the corner of the room has a button marked "On/Off".
You probably remember pressing it when you first bought the set and plugged
in the VCR cables.
Well, believe it or not, if you press that button again, your viewing problems
will be solved -- the set will turn off!
What am I saying?
Come on folks - ditch the boob tube for a while and get off the sofa.
Instead of sitting there passively soaking up whatever the TV programmers
have decided to dish up, either go for a walk (if it's still light) or
at least plonk yourself down in front of your PC and start interacting
with the rest of the world.
Maybe its about time we kicked off a "Switch To The Net" campaign and showed
the TV broadcasters that we can think for ourself and that, if they can't
provide a decent level of programming, we'll just stop watching.
Now I'm not suggesting that we turn off the sets forever -- there's still
some gems amongst the dross. Just change your viewing habits a little.
If the programme you're watching isn't particularly interesting then don't
waste another 30 or 60 minutes of your life -- get off your backside and
Have you tried out all the services that the Net has to offer?
Usenet? IRC? The multitude of online discussion forums? Building your own
web-page? Special interest mailing lists?
There's a lot more to the Net than just web-browsing and email, and most of
those other activities are highly interactive in nature, fostering conversations
and new friendships that stimulate thought and discussion.
Come on folks, don't let the TV consume what little leisure time you have
in a day. Ask yourself this question -- what were you doing on Tuesday
evening two weeks ago?
If you can't remember then chances are you wasted most of that evening in
front of the TV. Wouldn't you rather make every evening a memorable occasion?
Of course it would be great of the mainstream media picked up on this idea and
promoted it nationwide -- but let's face it -- unless it was promoted on TV,
most of the population wouldn't even know it was happening.
So, tell a neighbour, tell a friend, tell everyone you know that they should
stop wasting their lives and "Switch To The Net."
Well the PCP pulled down their website yesterday and ditched the link to
the music file -- which lends significant weight to the assertion that
they'd done this without permission and were therefore stealing bandwidth
from some other poor sucker's account -- would you vote for a party that
engages in this type of unethical behaviour?
Oh, and while they pulled the music, their mail form is still wide open
to abuse by spammers. I guess they just don't care.
The Greens tell me that they have added some field-verification to their
spam-an-editor page and I've offered to help them sort out a few other
little "oopses" I've noticed. (Hey, I've always been free with my
advice -- people only have to ask)
Another eagle-eyed reader has spotted yet another flaw in the Greens'
Open Source initiative. He says that it seems that JPEG files on the
site have been created with an Adobe product. Well hey, you can
only take this Open Source thing so far -- right?
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