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Cable Televison: An Addiction

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posted on Feb, 10 2016 @ 10:47 PM
I write this post in the same manner as a person lighting up a cigarette would discuss the hazards of smoking.

For awhile now, I have considered "cutting the cord" in light of what seems like an exorbitant bill each month hoisted on me by my quasi-monopolistic local cable company.

This is not to say the issue is money. This is also not to say I am looking for a cheaper, alternative method of visual media consumption.

My desire derives from an urge to simply watch less television. Honestly, I want to read more, grow my base of hobbies, etc. Now some would stop me here and say, "well, then just watch less television." Staying with my smoking analogy, this is as feasible as having a pack of cigarettes on me at all times as I try and quit smoking.

Cable television is an addiction.

"Most of the criteria of substance dependence can apply to people who watch a lot of TV."

"...University of British Columbia studied a mountain community that had no television until cable finally arrived. Over time, both adults and children in the town became less creative in problem solving, less able to persevere at tasks, and less tolerant of unstructured time."

"To some researchers, the most convincing parallel between TV and addictive drugs is that people experience withdrawal symptoms when they cut back on viewing."


I have tried to break this addiction in the past, only watching TV on Sunday's, etc. My addiction ultimately proved too strong and pulled me back in.

What generally pulls me back in, however, are the few things I consider exceptions to my aforementioned problem.

First, local accessibility. I am a huge sports fan. I want to watch my teams play and this is only available through a cable subscription (as far as I am aware). Without traditional cable, I would be without an important part of my life (in my opinion).

Second, there are a few shows I really enjoy watching (e.g., Walking Dead and Game of Thrones). HBO has a standalone package now that can satisfy one-half of my "needs," but I am not sure what alternative is available for AMC programming.

Let's be honest, I sound like an addict with these justifications and exceptions. Nevertheless, certain aspects of television are important to my daily life. Sports and the shows I listed are watched by my bosses and colleagues, making it difficult to excise them from my vocabulary (lest I end up a leper).

Those of you who have joined the commune of cord-cutters, what did you do and what consequences did this cause?

Those of you similarly situated, what struggles and fears are keeping you from taking the scissors to your demon handler?

I think about all of the time I have "wasted" on the thoughtlessness freeway that TV creates and sometimes I find myself disappointed at wasted opportunities to enrich my life in more meaningful ways. These sorrows are generally suppressed by the warm glow of my iridescent box.
edit on 10-2-2016 by ExNihiloRed because: (no reason given)

posted on Feb, 11 2016 @ 12:03 AM
Stopped watching television over 10 years ago and dont miss it one bit ...honestly I cant even stand half an hour of TV when I go to eat at my moms house. German television is so shallow and plain stupid that I get mad at it very quick ...the shows it did enjoy were US series so I dont know how id feel in your situation. Ofc this doesnt help you much :/

posted on Feb, 11 2016 @ 01:49 AM
a reply to: ExNihiloRed

I was in the same boat as you, to a degree. But I watched a lot of stuff online too, and I much preferred it due to the absence of commercials (though I still endure them while watching sports). I ended up cancelling my cable because it was just a waste of money since the internet had everything I wanted to watch anyway. I soon realized that when I had cable, much of the time I would just watch TV because it was there. It would be a stupid show or a rerun... a complete waste of time.

Now I watch only the shows I like, only new episodes and I don't waste time on commercials. Commercials are usually 30% of the show, so that's a big time saver. So, I didn't really "cut the cord", I just made my watching more efficient.

posted on Feb, 11 2016 @ 05:07 AM
I found myself being single about 12 years ago or so, I found a nice little two bedroom Apt within my budget, When asked when I was going to hookup cable and house phone the Property Mgr and my friend who was with me were both shocked when I replied I wasn't going to get either. I had a cell phone and just needed Highspeed interwebs, I was good with that. Now, that seems to be the norm for many, but back then it was considered weird...

Times have changed.

posted on Feb, 11 2016 @ 12:34 PM
a reply to: ExNihiloRed

C-SPAN will be the death of me.

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