Wednesday, March 08, 2006

A landmark moment

Philobiblon: A landmark moment: the web overtakes TV "OK, it was a survey conducted for Google, but whatever the details, the finding that the average Briton spends around 164 minutes online every day, compared with 148 minutes watching television is a landmark." Brilliant. Next stop, broadband good and cheap enough to support downloadable movies and dramas, when you feel like watching them? Another step on the path towards personal control of one's information space........ .......Up to a point, given all the scraping and spamming that goes on, and the various Big Brother aspects pointed out by many. But I'm happy that things are moving in this direction. I think the first time I was conscious of this type of thought was when I read that the first video recorders went on sale in the UK. I was at the TV rental shop the morning after I read about them in the newspaper, asking to rent one (couldn't afford to buy one in those days -- they were about 5 times the price they are now, for a simple record/play facility, not even a timer, and I was an impoverished young person). The guy in the shop had never had anyone wanting to rent a video recorder before (they were that new) so he had to invent a rate. That must have been around 1978. It marked the beginning of the end for live TV in my life. By around 1984 (;-) ) I had pretty much stopped watching it entirely, as the only live material I watched by then was sports, and I gave up that pursuit in disgust when the "sports agent" mentality hit -- I liked it when you could get an Olympic silver in the 5000 metres by running round the canal in Birmingham every night for a year or two beforehand (without anyone knowing). And after you''d won you wouldn't get an OBE for a good 20 years (certainly not a knighthood). Nostalgia city! It certainly was not all good- no fax, internet, email -- we are much better off now, even with the sports agents.