I got to thinking about how I prefer to watch television anymore – on DVD after the season’s over – and it dawned on me exactly how the networks could take back the TV from all the cable channels.
Used to be there were 3 channels: CBS, ABC and NBC. You probably had maybe 2 independent stations too. In Chicago growing up, we had WGN. I watched cartoons on there, and Charlie Chan, Zorro, The Lone Ranger and The Cisco Kid on the weekends.
Now – you have hundreds of channels and that’s really digging into the ‘regular’ networks share of viewers. Of course, they try to do things to get people to come back, but it’s usually just crap. Or they try to copy whatever’s working on cable, watering it down for the sensor’s – which doesn’t really work either. They think, because cable can get away with edgier, riskier stuff, that they have to do the same thing.
But they’re wrong.
All the networks would have to do in order to blow cable away is this: offer everything on demand.
What’s that? I’m crazy? Think about it – if you could watch anything you wanted, anytime you wanted – wouldn’t that be huge? I mean – I really do prefer to just buy a season of DVD’s so I can watch them at my own pace, so I don’t have to wait a week to find out what happens next – I can just goto the next episode. It’s brilliant. It’s so simple. It’s -genius-.
If the networks offered up all their programing – every bit of it, not just a couple of popular shows here and there, imagine how ratings would soar! You wouldn’t have to choose anymore – no sitting there going, “Gosh! Do I watch BLAH on BLAH or BLAH on BLAH?”. Watch em both.
Heck – they can even keep the commercials in. If I could, for example, click a button and get all the episodes of CSI for the season to watch whenever I wanted to – I wouldn’t care at all that there were commercials in there. It would be worth it not to have to be there in front of the tv on Thursday nights.
I doubt they’ll ever do it – but if they did, I think they’d be relevant again…