I have been accused of being a TV head. Mountain Man can go days without even looking at the weather report. This is not to say that he doesn’t have programs that he likes or that I haven’t had times in my life that I didn’t even own a TV set for years on end.
This past week an envelope arrived in the mail. The Nielsen Ratings Group is courting me. They want my opinion on TV viewing. They want me to tell them, show them, what I watch to ultimately help companies know how to sell their commercials on television time to their best advantage.
Now there was once a time that I would have given almost anything to have that little box attached to my TV. I was repeatedly disappointed with good shows being canceled in lieu of dumb sitcoms. I felt that there should be more programming with a heart that the whole family could watch together. I was tired of ill mannered kids making fun of their silly parents for a laugh. Cosby, Little House, Waltons all had their runs and I felt there should be something more for the next generation.
And that doesn’t even touch the adult shows done with intelligence and meaning. Even the ones that started out good lost integrity to please their commercial sponsors. Nature that once was on Disney and a Sunday night family staple was shuffled away to Public TV stations. (Not that they didn’t do a good job of it.) It was all down to the dollar and how much could be made by giving the easily swayed public silly garbage to watch in between they’re commercials.
I don’t watch a lot of TV anymore and the shows I do have been canceled or favorite characters have just left the cast. Grisom is gone from CSI and Pushing Daisies (Intelligent humor) has been canceled. I can’t get Cosby, Designing Women, Waltons, or even Golden Girls on rerun.
I can now have a Nielsen box but there is nothing much of intelligence or heart to get my vote. Yes, I can still help out with picking cartoons for other peoples children but not much else. And because I don’t have any children in my house I don’t know if my vote will count toward them either.
Nielsen is finally calling and I’m not so sure I even want to let it in.