‘The CONS of Online Television’ was published in the Strathclyde Telegraph in May 2015. My amazing friend Sophie wrote a contradicting article, ‘The PROS of Online Television’ which I urge you all to check out for complete, argument balance!
One might think God reached his peak when he planted the brains in the person who came up with the concept of instant, online television streaming – no TV licence required. But then he created all these obstacles as well, and I can’t help wondering if it takes away from the whole experience…
Exclamation bubbles from HELL
You’re home. It’s been a long day of fake smiling, hand shaking and avoiding the Netflix app on your home screen. Unsurprisingly, you want nothing more than to lay back and let the couch engulf all your feelings of inadequacy over some Orange is the New Black. But wait. What’s that little red exclamation mark on the bottom right corner of your screen? “Limited connection” to the wifi? “Unable to load Netflix”?! Not tonight, pal. At least Corrie doesn’t rely on the internet to get their show on the road…
The ‘do I/don’t I?’ dilemma
Sitting watching an entire Television series can be thirsty work, which goes hand-in-hand with your poor bladder. Not to worry, though, the adverts can’t be far off, right? Wrong! One of the features you unconsciously signed up for upon registration was the disappearance of adverts in online television. Now, not only will you never be 100% sure when Christmas is – given the lack of Coca-Cola Santa on your screen – you will also never quite know when the optimal time to toilet dash is. Chances are you’ll ‘YOLO’ it right before an integral part of the plot and have forgotten what’s happening when you return.
“Have you watched episode 15 yet?” Which one’s that? “The one after 14?” What happens? “OH, *insert key love storyline* gets good, but it stops after episode 17.” Sigh. A thing we might forget whilst binge watching is that the storylines in television shows were specifically designed to be enjoyed in weekly bouts. This whole “in-demand” luxury means that when people use streaming to watch shows for the first time today, they never truly get the full heart-wrenching, emotional journey of a character’s story line week-by-week. They will also miss out on planning meal times, family visits, birthdays, deaths, weddings, etc. around the next episode. Don’t you think T.V. becomes less of a luxury when it’s all-you-can watch?