When I was a kid, watching TV programs meant watching what was on at a particular time and you had to know when your favorite shows were on and be ready to watch at that time, or have it recorded to tape (those antique things), or you’d miss out on that day or week. I remember some channels had bad reception in our area too.
I lived through the fall of the corner video stores (RIP Blockbuster and Hollywood Video), so the slow(!) change to the on-demand delivery of content was not unforeseeable. These days, I rarely turn on a TV to watch a broadcast channel. Usually, I’m just using the display to watch something on Netflix or Crunchyroll, or even streamed off my phone.
I can totally see a day when the cable that brings broadcast shows into the home will only be used instead for internet access and to watch live event streams as needed.
News programs still seem to dominate broadcast channels, or that’s at least what is on during prime times when I see my parents watching. It’s either that or shows about hoarders or house hunters I see most often, with the occasional movie.
As for the news, there’s just so many more options online and it’s super easy to focus on specific topics from multiple sources. TV just doesn’t offer such flexibility, and that’s why it’s super worrisome that there’s still a large number of people that only get news information primarily from TV, and from the big networks. Sure, some of them are doing a good job, but, there’s often these days stories that break online, with all the big networks scrambling to catch up or even just copy-pasting social media posts.
It’s a different world these days and it’s getting more online-centered. I wonder if anybody reading this is out of range for some of this, like in a rural area or something. I wonder what people in those areas think of all this. Do they even notice?
Photo credit: Sven Scheuermeier