DirecTV and Viacom should play nice, considering they’re taking our money.

How long before the warring media giants remember that entertainment is a discretionary purchase?

DirecTV’s Mike White & friend during happier times.

Wanna hear a funny story?

DirecTV and Viacom decide to have a spat. During the spat, one or the other (each one points a finger) decides it would be a great idea to turn off the disputed networks, leaving nothing but dead air on 17 (according to DirecTV) channels offered to DirecTV’s customers.

Now, children are crying in the streets, and parents are running out to Best Buy for Sponge Bob DVDs. Hilarious.

How long before the warring media giants remember that entertainment is a discretionary purchase? Sure, these companies would have us believe that we need these programs and channels – but the simple point is, more people are watching a cat flush a toilet on YouTube then are actually watching half the programming on cable.

We don’t NEED cable or satellite. We don’t NEED hundreds of channels.

Think I’m nuts? Try the following experiment:

  • Make a list of all the programs you currently feel are a ‘must see.’ the shows that you always record, or make sure you are at home to see every week.
  • Now, list out the channels that host the programs. How many channels are you actually watching each week? Six? Ten?

Frankly, this is a math that media providers hope you won’t calculate. They have ‘new math:’ more is better. We know better: more is practically useless.

How many channels do nothing but run old programming? How many times will we actually sit down for a Law & Order marathon? Why do we want to watch a movie on a network with advertising that shows DVD extras during the commercial break – when we already have the DVD? How many channels have left their singular focus behind (cartoon network, MTV, Court (now Tru) TV, etc.) to simply show the same crap as all the others? How many Kardashians does it take to keep a network afloat?

Let’s forget the fact that Viacom had net earnings of 3 billion dollars last year. Let’s forget the fact that DirecTV had net earnings of 7 billion. Lets forget the fact that the possible one billion dollar increase in DirecTV’s licensing fees to Viacom will be passed on to DirecTV’s customers. Lets forget the fact that grandpa has no idea how to use the remote or record a show, and thinks pausing live TV is the work of Satan.

Instead, let’s remember the fact that we actually PAY to get channels fed into our home that have COMMERCIALS. People get ticked-off spending eight bucks a month for Hulu, and having to deal with one commercial before the program starts, yet many of us pay over 100 dollars a month to bombard ourselves with stupid insurance slogans, fast food combo meals and cars we can’t afford because we’re paying to Comcast the equivalent of a car payment each month for channels we never watch.

That’s just stupid. We have been duped. And now, a mega corporation that makes billions of dollars off of the consumer has turned off channels to supposedly teach ANOTHER mega corporation that makes billions of dollars off of the consumer a lesson?

How about we teach THEM a lesson? Call whichever cable/satellite company that is currently ‘serving’ you and tell them to take their box back.

Surely, we can do better than this.

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