Sayonara, Cable TV and Your $50 a Month BS

By Matt Van Hoven 

Over the last few years, watching TV has become a huge chore. Well it’s always been tedious, but now more than ever it’s increasingly obvious that TV, including both broadcast and network providers, completely and totally suck. So, here’s why we don’t like it and what we’re going to do (if we can convince our roommates) to end the madness.

The Problem
First thing: as much as we love watching commercials, they are a huge waste of time that could be spent doing any number of things to improve one’s life. Each 30 second spot we’re subjected and re-subjected to is a waste the second time around (unless the message wasn’t absorbed completely bla bla). Furthermore, our habit is to “channel-check” until we’ve found something worth watching, until that show lands on a commercial and the whole thing starts over.

It’s annoying, and furthermore most of what we end up watching ends up being only semi-interesting anyway. All in all, cable (Time Warner Cable for us, $50 a month &#151 it’s the only service provider we have to choose from, and obvi the main programming is not ala carte) is killing our wallet. Compared to Web service (also $50) TV can’t compete on variety, barriers to entry and all that. So, our plan is to cut the cable altogether.

No more will we channel-check &#151 it’s over! Good Lord, we’re fucking tired of renting shitty television from TWC &#151 and there’s no friggin’ way we’re spending $8 more for DVR or $140 on TiVo.

One last point: we love what you all do, but your ads aren’t paying for good TV like they used to, so we’re giving up. Done. It’s over.

The Solution

We own an XBOX, which we use all the time for things like Guitar Hero and all that. But a semi-new and awesome feature we’d like to sign up for is NetFlix, which for like, $8.99 a month offers tons of movies (some 6,000). A guy can stream as many as he wants in a month, and pretty soon NetFlix promises to have their entire 12-gajillion movie library available &#151 even better! We love movies, and despise much of what’s available on TV, so this plan feels good. So does the additional $40 we’ll save each month.

News and other popular TV shows can be got online, via specific news and show sites as well as Hulu. And as for the occasional presidential inauguration, well, we’ll always have good ole’ network news if we want to watch it live.

Final Thought

Much of our general anger toward TWC could have been avoided with ala carte service at low rates. We’re sure they have some excuse for not offering this, but that secretly they figure it will be years before other cable providers enter the market. But what they didn’t seem to bank on was our level of frustration driving us to create our own content service. Sure, it’s going to require some duct tape, but the time we won’t spend watching ‘Saved by Zero’ and its brethren will be used creating other ideas like this one &#151 ideas that will not only save us money, but that will also save us from the monotony that is the 30 second spot.


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