I get asked from time to time which satellite, cable, DVD rental, digital download or online viewing services I use, and how do I “watch” or “listen” to those. To try and give a comprehensive answer to this question, I’m going to write a periodic series called “My Media”. In these articles I’m going to try and lay out how I get my media, how I processes it, and how I (and my family) consume it.
Now this may seem like a lame topic for some people, but media is changing. It has been over a decade sense I watched TV based on a broadcast schedule. In fact I even remember the last TV show that I arranged my time around to watch. It was a show on TNT called “Witch Blade”. (A show who’s comic book forerunner had tries back to a fellow Crossvileian, Michael Turner.) Media is now “on demand” and omnipresent. We watch video on small screens and large screens, listen to music from devices that can hold entire audio genres at ounce, and read books from wireless connected pads. There is such a great divide between the way I watch video and the way my parents watch video and I look at my daughter and wonder just how different her experience with entertainmnt and information will be from my own.
I brag that I’ve not watched “TV” in years, though I do have the lighted box commonly referred to as ” the television”. I also have subscriptions to various providers of video and audio. But the way I’ve seen people watch “tv” is not the way I watch TV. I’m proud to say I’ve never watched a reality TV show, unless you count Formula 1 racing and UT football, and those are less like reality shows than soap operas.
While I don’t think there is a “right” way to take in media, I know there are many, many, “wrong” ways to do it. This is just the way I do it, and some thought about what I feel are good ideals and bad ideals in the changing media state.
Legality.. I going to come right out and say that some of the things I’m going to write about here are legal gray areas. While I’m not going to give a step by step “how to” on violating copyright law, I don’t what to misrepresent myself as someone who is puritanical on the issue of copyright. In those places where copyright holders have provided me with a method that conforms to the way I wish to view my media, then I have no problem abiding by their framework. However when a copyright holder does not provide a method that conforms to the way I wish to view my media, then I feel I have every right to circumvent their framework so as to conform to my needs. As far as compensation for copyrighted works, I make every effort to abide by the sprit if not the rule of the controlling licensing agreements. I understand that the production of good media requires money. However, I also know that as a savvy consumer, I find the best ways to obtain my media. I will say that my conscience is not troubled one bit and I sleep very well at night. So that means I’m ether on the right moral side of the issue or I’m a sociopath.