Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Ok Ok, I watched your damn commercial

We should pay for the things we enjoy as a result of the work of others.  I acknowledge there is no free lunch, it simply makes no sense to believe otherwise.

So consider the "free" homepage and e-mail offered by various internet services.  My homepage has been MSN forever; initially I paid $10 a month for MSN Premium with services I never used; but it felt right that I should pay something for the e-mail and the news feeds. Fast forward and, with times so tight, I dropped the paid service (I don't think they even offer it anymore).  Surprise, the free version didn't lose any of the functions I used.  In fact, there was no useful difference between before and after.  But now, some guilt creeps in as to how the good people who daily administer this service are recompensed. Wait, of course, it's the advertisements!

Parts of my homepage and e-mail are always streaming an ad. And when I surf, I might roll the mouse over a cleverly concealed popup activator that easily defeats my paid-for blocker.  OK, I can handle the distraction and occasionally, I even get the message--I really should check that pesky credit score.

I try to avoid video clips though.  Hey, what up with sitting through a 30 second pitch for 2 minutes of content?  But often the story I want isn't in print.  I'm just gonna have to get it from Matt Lauer.  So, after 32 seconds of a blue bear singing to his toilet paper roll whilst picking pieces of tissue off his ass (kudos there, Charmin), I'll get the Today Show version of a hot story.  God forbid it should refer me to another video; wherein I ponder "Can 15 minutes with GEICO can save me hundreds of $$?"  Oh silly me, "Does a bear s%#* in the woods?"   Not blue bears, according to Charmin.

Oh yeah, take that bitter, over-sized horse-pill. I owe SOMETHING to "pay" for this info; no free lunch, balance in the cosmos, Yin and Yang--and all that.  BUT...

Lately, I take more medicine than I "need." Worse, take medicine with no payoff.  Often the commercial plays and only AFTER do I get a message that the content is "temporarily unavailable."  Say what?  Why you dirty rotten...

And don't get me started on BING, the intelligent search engine.  Well, if you insist.  All these teasers in the corner of my home page are not stories, but searches, and hidden within their links are important messages, like that one thing that can give you washboard abs.

Yes, I could ignore BING but... Lady Gaga and Vladimir Putin did WHAT?  Oh man, click on that puppy, I gotta know...  Ummm, ah yes, BING has given me a short blurb, and I have only to CLICK ON 8 HI-LITED  #%&*@  KEY-WORDS TO GET THE WHOLE STORY, EACH OF WHICH DIRECTS ME TO NUMEROUS $%#&@ ABBREVIATED ARTICLES WHICH.... I knew I should've stayed off BING.

I have a choice, I know.  I could subscribe to a newspaper; dated as the info may be.  It is there at my leisure.  It will not deny me promised content.  It will not insult my intelligence with toilet tales.  Alas, I choose instead to add inertia to the decline of the printed word; such is my need for breaking news and pointless celebutante trivia.  I paid my dues, I watched your damn commercial, now give me my fix.

1 comment:

AuPair Extraordinaire said...

hahaha, dad, you sound like an internet junkie. your fix of videos and news stories and what-not :)