I’ve had a problem for the last couple years. Fortunately, it’s an easily solved one. Just about everything I’ve watched since about 2004 has been downloaded, or otherwise ripped from DVD’s borrowed or rented from elsewhere. This includes movies, TV shows, even the occasional hockey game–hey, I didn’t always have Leafs TV. The reasons are two-fold.
Movie companies have gotten incredibly sneaky with what they stick in that first track of current DVD’s. The one track you can’t actually skip/fast forward past–usually it just contains the FBI warning that says you can’t copy them. They’ve gotten good at cramming previews and other advertisements onto that first track. I’ve heard it said that some DVD’s actually have enough un-ignoreable advertising on there that you could theoretically run into the kitchen, whip up a quick snack, and come back in time to hit play. Download the movie instead, and snap. Problem solved.
TV shows have a similar problem. Only they actually make that problem slightly worse on TV. A typical hour-long show, minus advertisements, only actually lasts about 45 minutes. But they interrupt the show every 5-10 minutes for at least that long filled with commercials. It gets worse during live events, such as the olympics. I swear the advertising doubles at that point. And, as usual, they go to commercial during a semi-important portion of the said live event. Well, at least they didn’t cut off during most of the Canadian portions of the events.
My solution to both problems, except for the whole live events thing, is the almighty torrent. About 95% of everything I watch can easily be found, and downloaded, via that means–anything from CSI to Deep Space 9, and a few of the less popular shows that got me through highschool. Yeah, the MPAA may have a thing or three to say about it, but well, I have a thing or three to say about unwanted ads, too. I’d say we’re even. The only difference is, I won’t spend money to take down the MPAA. Yeah, I’m a pirate when it comes to TV shows. I also have a difficult time caring. You can blame the MPAA, and ads. I do. And I sleep just fine.