Commoditization of the Olympics?

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Do you enjoy watching sports? Do you enjoy the thrill of watching one opponent defeat another, the excitement of the one point, the anguish of defeat in those you emotionally invest in? Do you follow every sport equally, or enjoy some more than others?

Twenty years ago you had to choose. What do I watch and what do I record? Then, technology changed things. We could record multiple sources and watch later. Timeshifting became a thing. If three games were on, and you wanted to see them all, you could record them while enjoying a night at the movies.

Once every four years we enjoy the Olympics. Well, not exactly. What we get to do is watch what we are provided. We don't get to see everything we want to, but what someone else wants us to watch. We are provided the part of the story that other people feel matters to us. We don't watch a story unfold, we observe the narrative we are provided.

Because ladies and gentlemen, we are idiots.

At least that is what the everyone involved in the Olympics wants us to believe.

Let us consider the right way to do the Olympics, and compare it to the mess that currently exists.

Imagine for a moment, that a funding site exists. Say, OlympicFund.com. This is a place where we, the public, get to fund being able to watch the Olympics. We can donate a dollar, or a million. It is designed to be a crowd funded platform.

When you donate, you get to vote. All votes are equal. You select the top five most important events to you. You also select the five least important events. Money for filming events is provided to the most most voted ones first, and works it way to the least voted.

Teams are selected to record events from most to least important. The team is required to record the entire event. Unedited footage is stored on servers as is. Apps are made to access the video stored on the servers. People get free apps in various app stores, but pay (event ticket) for each event they want to watch. All of this is ad free.

With this format, the largest number of people get what they want. An ad free method of watching what they feel is important in the Olympics. The television studios know what is important (the demographics are done for them). And people that can not afford to pay anything can watch the ad driven material from networks.

This method separates the time wasters from those that value their time. If TV is a way to fill hours you get to make money for networks. If instead this is an information source, you get the information with integrity. You follow something beginning to end without being duped by the opinion of others.

Just an empty space for rent…

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Advertising causes illness. It is the sign of a sick mind. Some, a small amount, is okay. Consider advertising like alcohol. Surely have a beer with lunch. Have a glass of wine with dinner. Enjoy it. A little here, a little there, not a problem. Imagine if you spent all day, every day drunk. Completely hammered wandering around the planet doing what you do every day. That is the point that the average person has reached with advertising.

5 years. 5 years have passed since the T.V. was removed from the living room. Initially the absence was noticed. Then, gradually that was gone too. The interest is gone. The idea of sitting in front of a box spewing ads invokes feelings of trepidation. Listening to ads on the radio ruins the experience of the music. Having ads in line with articles in newspapers and magazines, devalues the article. It says, “Your time reading is so unimportant that we will be happy to distract you with this ad.”

What is to be done?

First, get rid of the damn idiot box. You are not meant to be a passive victim of life as it happens to you. There is a difference between taking some time to be entertained by watching a show and taking some time to watch ads with a little entertainment thrown in. This is why iTunes exists.

Buy a season of Walking Dead (or whatever you like to watch), watch it, and be entertained. Notice that you do not sit through a single advertisement. The season may cost $40, $50, or $60 dollars. This is good for two reasons. First, you watch what truly has value to you (watch how quickly crap like Jersey Shore disappears from production). Second, you do not pay for watching advertising. You can always earn more money; you CAN NOT earn more time. You get the same 24 hours to spend that everyone else does, and spending it on advertising is costly.

Why spend money on a season of T.V. shows that you can get for free? I KNOW you are asking this. And, you are lying to yourself. If you get rid of your T.V. you get rid of cable too. You save $60 dollars a month on cable. Buy a season of a T.V. show every month, and watch it ad free. You are only paying for what you watch with BOTH time AND money. You are no longer PAYING TO WATCH ADS! Think about that for a moment. YOU PAY TO WATCH ADS! The added benefit of buying the season, you get to watch it whenever you want.

Next, stop listening to radio stations that have ads. You can pay for ad free music using XM, listen to public radio, or become an amateur radio operator. All three of these options allow you to avoid ads. The first one allows you to listen to music, the second will allow you to know what is happening, and can even educate you. If you like to participate in radio, become an amateur radio operator. Then, you can talk to people world wide and offer a public service.

Buy books and subscribe to trade journals.

The idea is simply this. Take back your life. Stop being a passive meat bag. If someone offers you a good or service, and the product is exceptional in some way, let people know. Word of mouth advertising is the equivalent of a beer with lunch. It is responsible use of advertising. Decide that you will not be an empty space for rent.