Wednesday, August 21, 2013

The Death of Old-Time Media

Remember when TV was new? No, neither do I. For me, TV was always there.

It seems that old-fashioned media has lost a whole bunch of its luster lately. Today, people spend only 4:31 hours a day watching television. Really? That many?

I remember when TV was fun. Or maybe my unreliable memory just tells me that. I sure don't remember big gobs of commercials. Seems to me that commercials, when I was a kid, lasted only long enough for me to toddle off to the bathroom. Now I could write this blog post, come back, and the commercials would still be droning.

Think that's why people don't watch TV so much anymore? I do. That, plus, face it, most TV is crap. Networks have caved to society's short attention span and lack of critical thinking skills, so they've dumbed everything down for us, as a favor. That's good for dumb people, bad for people like us.

The chart below also tells us that people now spend 5:09 hours online. Seriously? How in the world...?

If by "online", they mean somebody has their browser open, then sure. I have Firefox or IE open approximately eighteen hours out of every day. That doesn't exactly mean I'm looking at stuff online. It's just open. Sitting there.

On a normal workday, I am able to scan my favorite news sites and other generic interests in about ten minutes. Really. That's the time I have available before I am officially on duty. I get all the news that's fit to be read in less than a quarter hour. Maybe some people are REALLY slow readers.

Radio? 1.26 hours per day. How can people bear it? I never listen to "music" radio anymore. I can listen to talk radio for four or so hours, but that's simply because it sort of blends into the background, and because I can take my headphones off every time a stupid 1-877-KARSFORMORONS commercial comes on, or an ad for Phyta-Beta-Something-Or-Other Vitamin Supplement starts blasting.

And newspapers? Phhhh. Who reads 'em? Apparently nobody, judging by the paltry eighteen minutes per day. Again, I say, that many? I can peruse the Wall Street Journal in ten, tops.As for those other rags, I wouldn't deign to even lay my hands on them.

When I really want to know what's going on in the world, yep, I go online. Just not for five hours. TV? Drives me nuts. Newspapers? Too hard to fold. Radio? Well, that's just a bunch of guys bitching. At least the internet is quiet - usually. I don't like a bunch of strangers telling me how I need to think about something.

Maybe that's just me.


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