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TV Turnoff Week 2007 is just around the corner, and once again major
American and Canadian television networks appear to be stonewalling our
attempts to air public service ads that promote responsible viewing.
This year's round of ads includes a revived and updated classic
"uncommercial" from our early days, along with a second spot featuring a
score by Philip Glass and footage by award-winning American filmmaker
Godfrey Reggio (the Qatsi trilogy). The U.S.-based ABC network has
already rejected the ads outright, while several other cable and
broadcast networks have stalled attempts to air the spots in time for
the major anti-TV festival.
"The question, as Hardin noted, is one of freedom. 'When men mutually agreed to pass laws against robbing, mankind became more free, not less so.' "
When will we reach the breaking point? Our minds have become a virtual dumping ground of pollutants — manipulative ads, distorted news, untold violence, spin and hype. We can cope with the media onslaught to a degree. But all signs suggest that the cumulative effects of this toxic culture — on our stress levels, our moods, our relationships, our worldviews, even our mental health — could become one the most pressing issues of our generation.