Tuesday, May 12, 2009
The reason that TV is free is that there are advertisements to support the stations. When and if the advertisers lose authority over audiences, a challenged will bear down on television. Television could completely go out of business. However, I feel that this is highly unlikely in a culture that demands so much electronic entertainment. Technology exists to charge viewers per show as one option. Again, I do not believe that culture would approve of this option since audiences have had nearly six decades to get used to free television. If traditional commercials become obsolete due to DVRs, I think the most likely technological development will be the reapplication of something that all internet users have experienced. Currently, many shows are available on the internet only if the viewer watches the commercials that are mandatory to be run before the show. With the failure of advertisements in their normal 60 second spots, I see the TV channels controlling their content completely so they can set up a requirement for viewing their show. That requirement might be watching the sponsor's advertisement. Without that requirement, the show won't be displayed. Certainly, channels will need to come up with something to continue the flow of advertising dollars even as new technologies are brought forth to allow avoidance of commercials.
Sunday, May 3, 2009
The class has been assigned a topic that I find outlandishly expansive. Due to the breadth of the topic, I feel that some rambling on various media topics would be completely appropriate. Currently, I am typing this blog while watching Independence Day on a minor cable channel. After having learned various techniques used by the advertising companies, the intentions of the commercials become much clearer. Many commercials are so ridiculously single-sided that it almost seems to detract from their ability to make a good pitch to a consumer. More consumers need to be informed when they watch TV, so advertisers will have to be held to a higher standard of truth and information. A good connection to make with other school classes can be found in the assumptions made in economic theory. The success of most economic hypotheses depends on the idea of perfect competition, and the idea of perfect competition depends on consumers receiving perfect information on products. Unfortunately, advertisements do not provide perfect information. Actually, advertisements can provide information that distorts the truth and illustrates a false product. Knowing this, I can conclude that for a market society to function, consumers must be informed, and for consumers to be informed, they must become media literate.