Dexter and the dumbness of TV companies


Television companies despite literally years and years of notice still have absolutely no idea that it is no longer 1986 in terms of their business model. To take a small example – Channel 4 in the UK expect me to wait months after it has originally aired in the US before I can watch the Sopranos. And on top of that they expect me to sit through a 50 minute programme padded out to one hour fifteen minutes once a week. Oh, and to top it off Channel 4 will then as they have with so many US imports (the West Wing being a classic example of this) then have it on a different time each time as the season progresses.

So, to summarise I can follow the Sopranos at some point in the week and at some varying time and with half an hour of crap thrown in. Are they bonkers?

So, the alternative that I and so many others now do? Go on line download a day or so after it has aired in the US advert free. As far as I’m aware there is no legal way to purchase the Sopranos without waiting a year or so for the DVDs to be released.

I do buy some stuff via iTunes so far as it available but this is only available through the US store. So, I have spoofed the store that I am registered and downloading in the US just to bloody buy anything. That’s right I have to deceive them into allowing me to give them money. Which leads me to the ridiculous ideas some of the content companies have about DRM and territorial rights – seriously guys it is 2006 are you really that fucking stupid or are these rules just something you made up to bemuse me and piss me off at the same time? No Sopranos there anyway.

But while I am on the subject of the iTunes store. I did have a subscription on the store to the Daily Show but dropped it because I was sick of the episodes arriving in bunches sometimes days later (and I know from talking to a couple of people that this is not an isolated case). Now, I don’t know if you have seen the Daily Show but kind of the point is that it commenting on and referring to events as they have unfolded within that day or so. So, receiving Tuesday’s episode on the following Saturday morning kind of kills it. So, what so I do now? Well I download it for free from a bit torrent site couple of hours after it airs.

Anyway, what this does do is makes us a little out of sync with some of our friends who may not see some of this stuff for another year or even then. The classic example of this Dexter. This is brilliant, innovative, funny, intelligent television. Stars, the guy out of Six Feet Under Michael C. Hall (the gay Fisher brother) as forensic police guy who is a serial killer by night. He is quite frankly brilliant in it. Read a bit about it here.

And you can download the first episode and see what I mean here (sorry the day or two has passed so link no longer works). Will leave it up for just a day or two. But, it means that people that may not have come across it or get the opportunity to see will then seek it out when it does come to Europe etc and/or will be a ready market for DVD when that comes out. Well, at least that’s how I’m justifying it to myself anyway.


Filed under: TV etc.

One Response

  1. […] Just been listening to the Media Guardian podcast and it seems I was a bit harsh on Channel 4. […]

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