Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Just Unplug


As of April 15th I will have disconnected from my satellite server. I have blogged about my feelings on this before but without a definite resolution until just recently.

I am one of the disadvantaged rural people that cannot get the television channels like ABC, CBS, NBC, and PBS with just a standard antenna. And while a lot has been touted about how great digital broadcasting will be nobody has said that it will make areas without television reception more able to receive local channels without paying a satellite or cable service for this privilege enjoyed by most citizens of this country. I cannot even get a daily local paper where I live but I can get Internet with a satellite which I also pay for.

It bothers me that I have to pay to find out what is happening in the world around me. But it brothers me even more that I do not get choices of what I pay for. The satellite and cable providers (pimps) claim they package channels to save me money but I argue with this. They want me to pay for 250 channels (235 of which I will not watch) to be able to get the 15 I will. And while single senior women are a large and growing segment of our society there is no package that does not include Disney, ESPN and an ample sprinkling of religious channels of faiths I resent supporting. I have e-mailed AARP on this issue and they are supposedly in talks with the satellite services (fear dealers) to develop a package aimed at us. Frankly, I believe as long as they can sell us 250 channels so we can get CNN, TNT and local news they will not change.

My response to this is to just say NO. NO television. NO satellite television service. I will get my news from Internet Websites. Weather that way too. I will watch DVD's for entertainment (without commercials trying to sell me something). I will read. And I will think. And one of the things I have been thinking about is where has the FCC been in all this? When did broadcast television cease to be a way to keep our population informed and start being a way of blackmailing them into compliance.