Posted Nov 01, 2006 in Television.
I cannot understand why the American TV viewer prefers to watch mind-numbing shit all the time. Whenever I read reports of television ratings, I get terribly depressed. Quality programming like Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip is eschewed in favor of spoon-fed garbage by the American viewer. Dancing with the Stars, for example, gets three times as many viewers as Studio 60, and twice as many as other high-quality productions like Shark and Brothers & Sisters.
I like watching television, but it is getting increasingly difficult to find stuff to watch that isn't aimed at organisms with barely-functioning brains. When all the new shows started in August/September this year, I made a list of all the interesting things that were on that I would like to see. At the beginning of November, a quarter of these shows have already been given the chop.
Another thing that bugs me is the way ratings are calculated. Since many shows are on at the same time as each other, or are on too late in the evening, I like to use my DVR to record some of them to watch later. I'm sure many people do this, especially the more affluent viewer who can afford this sort of equipment - the kind of people advertisers like to get on board, I might add. Yet this viewer data is completely ignored in the ratings. Guys, this is 2006, the era of video-on-demand and internet broadcasting. Change the way you gather your ratings!