Monday, April 9, 2012

Does your TV show run a minute longer now?

Have you noticed that lately some TV shows are running just a minute over their normal thirty or sixty minutes time slots? If you have noticed, have you wondered why? Did you think, "Oh, awesome. An extra minute of my favorite TV show!"

First of all, are you actually getting an extra minute of your TV show? Or are you getting an extra minute of advertising? Do you use Tivo or a DVR to record your shows? Do you ever record two shows when one is on a different channel and one is running a minute long? It is really annoying. Especially, if you are trying to record three different shows on two different stations. My HD DVR can record two separate stations at the same time. If some of you still have systems that can record only one station at a time, this may not be as interesting an article as it will be for others.

Some DVRs have a fix for this extra minute beyond the 30 or 60 minute show; it just "clips" a show for that minute. Excellent. Well, maybe. My old nonHD Tivo DVR does that. The one that is now in my bedroom. But my new, more expensive, main HD DirecTV Tivo DVR does not have that capability. One might wonder why, right? Wouldn't you think that the more expensive system would have the extra capabilities? I would too. Yet, it doesn't.

What does this extra minute being added to shows mean then?

I submit that it is just one more abuse heaped upon the viewer by the networks and the middle media suppliers like DirecTV. It's bad enough that we have the studios and networks, now we also have to contend with the middleman of cable and satellite providers. No, this is nothing new really, it's just that it got me really annoyed this past week. Why? Because it's happened before, and one has to assume that it will happen again; and probably get worse in ways we have yet to think up.

I don't know about you, but I'm tired of it. I'm sick to death of being abused by these companies internal issues. Last week I put on "House", one of my favorite TV shows and now in its last season. I sat down, turned on the recorded show on my DVR while it was still recording, and all I got was a static screen saying they are sorry but the FOX Network is to blame as they forced them to not carry their signal anymore due to lack of payment, or agreement, or something, and they (DirecTV) hoped it will end soon. After all it wasn't their fault, it was the fault of the big bad FOX Network. Right. Lovely.

I think back to when there was only the big three stations, ABC, NBC and CBS and this was something that would never have happened. Why? Because they had advertisers to answer to, they had the public to answer to. And back in those days, probably the FCC. If this happened back then, someone would be getting fired, or God knows, going to jail or something.

So what does this mean now? Maybe that they just don't have us all to answer to anymore? So, how is that?

All this diversity in having so many channels available now has not only given us more viewing options, it apparently has given the studios, networks and media providers more options, too. Like to act unprofessionally and treat their customers like lower class citizens. It would seem that we just don't matter that much, anymore.

So we now find ourselves at the beck and call of those who should be at the beck and call of we the public, the viewer, the ones who are really, in the end, footing the bill for all this nonsense. We should all remember that they, believe it or not, work for us, and not the other way around. It is the same thing with all corporations now a days and we need to realize that this kind of thought has even been seeping into our government.

We the general public, have allowed ourselves to be pampered into submission so that now we take pretty much anything that is offered to us. We grumble and then allow it. Well, Occupy the Networks, Occupy the Cable and Satellite carriers! We need to kick some digital signal carrying ass!

We really need to speak up. Obviously, the best thing would be for all of us to just cancel them. This situation would end, overnight. But let's face it, that will never happen. No more than that internet thing that floats around every so often saying that on some certain day, no one is going to buy gas from the oil companies. Right! Like that is going to happen.

Still, we can make some noise about it. And we should. But I have to tell you, exactly what that noise will be, I'm still trying to figure out. If you know what that is, well, we're all ears.


  1. At least with Dish now, you can record up to 5 channels at once.