Monday, April 28, 2008

The End of Passivity

Gin, Television, and Social Surplus is an article I've been waiting for practically all my life. It's got all the stuff in it that I hate about television, and all the reasons why the television culture may cease to be the ruling class in this world. I like television as much as the next person, but I have a number of very big objections to it. Here they are (you can stop reading now if you don't want a soap-box oratory):

1. A lot of it is stupid.

2. People are trying to sell me stuff the whole time and are counting on me not noticing that they are trying to sell me stuff.

2a. When people are trying to sell me stuff, they are willing to do anything they can to get me to buy it, including working really hard at making me hate myself so their product can be the solution.

2b. The people who want to sell me stuff are also thinking of my children as a commodity to be bought and sold, and have absolutely no compunction about trying to turn three-year-olds into buying machines (or using the whine factor to try to get little ones to turn me into their own personal buying machine). Also, they want to make my daughters feel bad about themselves so they will buy things. Yuck.

3. There is too much of it! I could spend all my life watching it and never be through. It makes it very unsatisfying at times.

4. TV is extremely passive, which is fine when I'm exhausted, but at other times I grow impatient.

That's all I can think of at the moment, but the article above fills me with glee. It also captures the essence of some of the things I love about blogging. I encourage you to go check it out.

4 comments:

spacedlaw said...

All this sums nicely why I don't have a TV (apart from not having the time for it)...

mantichore said...

There is too much of it! I could spend all my life watching it and never be through. It makes it very unsatisfying at times.

Yeah, well, that one is not very successful as a negative point, is it? I mean I could make the same argument about books. And music. And movies. And...

Emma said...

Re:2b
I am thankful that commercials directed at children are illegal in Sweden. Unfortunately this only applies to Swedish TV channels, which means that some of the most popular channels get around this by officially being in another country.

Also, great article! Makes me think :)

annie said...

I'm right with you.

Which is why I spend most of my TV time watching DVDs and drawing!!

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