Steve’s Kill Your Cable Adventure #2: In Depth Psychology And Stuff

So let's get an update on my Kill Your Cable attempts.

I'm finding it was good I got that Logitech revue cheap – as several places (Hulu, Comedy Central) don't support it.  Still not a bad device, but this is proof that territoriality is going to affect Kill Your Cable, and that some people are jerks.

I'm starting to revise my opinion that a Killbox is going to arise in the next year or two because A) I can't see anyone agreeing on anything, and B) As computers get so much cheaper and ubiquitous it may not be needed.

Really, I don't know – though it looks like Microsoft is going to try to make Xbox the Killbox.

My roommate, who just moved for another job, noted something interesting -if you just got a cheap computer for your Killbox, then you always have a backup computer just in case.  That's a pretty good point (Especially with cheap and small desktops).

For that matter maybe someone will get smart and pitch a cheap computer AS a Killbox.

I wanted to do Kill Your Cable because I got tired of the bills, lack of options, I didn't use it that much, and some cable companies have been really annoying.  It seemed like win-win.

Well I think it is and will be, but it really made me ask – what do I watch TV for anyway.  The answers surprised me.

News: Well, I used to watch a lot of news, until Cable news went into an ethical and content tailspin and crashed into the ground of irrelevance before bursting into the fireball of shallowness.  I get everything online (or through my cell phone), so I don't need cable for news at all.

Entertainment: Considering how much stuff on television is garbage anyway, and how much is available via DVDs, Netflix, online, etc. I don't really need cable for entertainment.  However, I did realize there was one factor more prominent than I thought . . .

Timeliness: Here's an oft-unspoken element of cable and any form of media – people want stuff in a timely manner.  They want it as soon as possible, and cable delivers that.  This is a difficult factor to deal with if you feel you need the immediacy – online may be your only option.  Fortunately there's little to nothing that I feel I have to keep up with, but Timeliness can be a factor for many people, including . . .

Socialization: When one of my roommates moved out for a job elsewhere, I realized how much of my media consumption is social.  In the case of "the latest thing," the social factor is huge, and perhaps unappreciated.  If you want to socialize/discuss "the latest thing," cable may be the only way to get it legally.  This is a powerful advantage cable has, one I am glad is slipping away, and a factor that I really hadn't appreciated.  I think about half my viewing of anything television-related is social.

So I'm realizing that my major reason for having cable is getting programs I watch/discuss with other people in a timely manner.  There's not a big list of these anyway, so I can pretty much do with out it.

For other households?  It might be a bit tough without focused effort.

Kill your cable actually makes you think – and that may actually be one of the biggest side effects of conscious and unconscious moves to a cableless future.  This has forced me to ask some serious questions, all from an innocent effort to save money and avoid annoyance.

I can see Kill Your Cable going "movement", building momentum, until it becomes it's own "thing."  At that point it gets FAR more interesting as it's about conscious media consumption . . .

Well my remaining roommate and I need to see if we can agree on our viewing habits via Netflix, Hulu, and the internet.  Let's see what happens!

Steven Savage