After a viewing a spate of sporting events on TV over the last few days, I can no longer take it!
The amount of commercial content is downright obscene! I honestly can’t watch national sports coverage anymore. Local team coverage on our local networks don’t seem to be as bad.
Here’s what I’m talking about.
Take football, f’rinstance. Now I know there’s been commercial breaks during each change of possession, but I think “They” are talking more now - during time outs… during ref huddles, etc.
The commercials I’M REALLY pissed about are the little insidious ones that occur while the game’s in progress, for chrissakes!.. the bar on the bottom 1/4 of the screen touting NBC’s evening line up… the play-by-play announcer taking 15 seconds out of calling the game to plug who’s on Letterman. Somewhere, somehow, someone flip-flopped the little switch and ratio of tv show to commercial got upended!
We have the Domino’s Halftime Report that’ll give us the stats to the Dorito’s Fiesta Bowl played at Enron Field, upon which every flat surface at is bedecked with a ba-zillion advertisements, and where you can purchase a $15 program that is 90% advertising.
I’VE HAD ENOUGH! SOMEONE MAKE THIS INSANITY STOP, NOW!
Awaiting ads on uniforms… oh, it’s coming, folks…,
sorry, cochese, but commercials and TV broadcasts are a fact of life. Unless you can convince the governing bodies of sports to charge the networks less for the rights to broadcast their very popular product.
personally, I don’t mind sitting through it all as long as I get to watch my team play.
I see your point and wouldn’t mind the “get over it” response if it weren’t for the fact that commercials are becoming so intrusive that they have altered sports coverage in 3 important ways:
The 1/4 of bottom of screen commercial bar. The reminder of the screen covering the game is squashed… due to the altered screen dimensions, the players look all fat and compressed. Sometimes numbers are hard to read.
There is no play-by-play or commentary while the sportscaster does his little “Coming up tonight on Fox…” pitch. Sometimes the director will actually cut away from the action for a few seconds of promo screen and when we’re brought back to the action, we’ve missed a crucial play.
COMMERCIALS INTRUDE ON THE ACTUAL PLAY OF THE GAME. Hockey coaches don’t have to worry about calling time-outs during regular play to rest players or go over strategy. They know that commercial breaks come often enough. They also know that there aren’t any commercials during overtime, therefore they change their approach to using time outs during these periods.
Likewise, basketball teams know that 20 second time-outs are never 20 seconds long, due to commercials. That’s why you’ll see teams dilly-dally in a huddle until the ref comes over to break them up.
Football coaches count on commercials to go over strategy with players and make substitutions. And if you’ve ever gone to see a football game, your going to see a lot of standing around going on. Why should commercials have any affect on play at the actual stadium?! It’s ridiculous.
I guess I have a problem with commercials and tv coverage dictating how and when games should be played and not the other way around.
Just my 4 cents worth. I feel better know. Thanks for reading.
What gets me is when they scrunch the credits at the end of a tv show or movie. I admit I don’t care who the head grip or best boy are (ahem…no I won’t go there), or who the assistant to the secretary to the whoever is. But dammit sometimes I wanna see the names of the cast; I wanna know who played a certain character. But I can’t even see it because they need 3/4 of the screen to play MORE COMMERCIALS!!!
Nah, the worst is when you get the audio coming attrractions during amusing end credit sequences.
Fox does this with The Simpsons reruns all the time. So instead of hearing Bart’s Putting Challenge Video Game or Chief Wiggum sing along to Bob Marley, we get to hear about back-to-back Nanny episodes…
The worst one in my mind is “Strangers With Candy”, the totally perverted and enjoyable parody of an After-School special that’s shown on Comedy Central. Each and every one of these shows ends in an original song with the cast members dancing to it. These are mostly Second-City trained troupe members and star Amy Sedaris is also a member of the Drama Department, a wonderful little theatre in Greenwich Village that I subscribe to, so they’re hilarious and also in character to whoever they’re playing.
CC, after a few seconds, will squish them into one-quarter of the screen and talk over them to flog something like the League of Gentlemen or the ninety zillionth showing of “Meatballs”. In the last second, it comes up again full-screen. :mad:
And this is pervasive–the PBS station in NH used to do it for the ending credits of “Blackadder II”, which also has an original song for each one.
Forget about seeing the end credits of an actual movie shown on network TV too. You’d think there’d be union rules or something.
How’s this for “progress”: I recently recorded all the “All in the Family” eps off TVLand. The eps went from 24-28(!) minutes each. Recently taped season six of “The Drew Carey Show”. Average length: 20.5 minutes!!!
Syndicated-only shows fare no better: Star Trek: The Next Generation was made with commercials in mind: 46 minutes. Now that its original run is long over and it’s on all the time, each ep has lost 1-2.5 minutes each!
The credits are absolutly significant. I recently watched a very intense movie, and when it was over, the credits started with a song that fit the movie perfectly - until the damn network broke it up with a blaring advertisement for some comedy show. I mean, come on, I usually like to read the credits, and reflect upon the movie, and that completely ruined it!
McKenna, funny you should mention Comedy Central. A few years back Penn Gilette (Of Penn and Teller) did the voice overs for CC. And his voice overs would frequently down out various comedy bits run over the Mystery Science Theater credits. This pissed off the MSTies so much that they bombarded CC with complaints. IIRC, Penn Gilette appeared on the air one day apologizing for the timing of the voice overs and it never happened again.
MSTies are tenacious like that. The Sci-Fi channel actually moved its ever present Saturn corner logo to the other side of the screen because thousands of viewers complained that it was obstructing Crow’s head.
The Cable Advertising Bureau and the Newspaper Advertising Bureau recently reported that fewer than 8% of viewers can remember any product that was advertised during a specific show. Why? Too many commercials. It’s known in the industry as “clutter.” It’s a huge issue - advertisers want TV execs to run fewer commercials during TV shows while still running THEIR commercials. TV execs want to get the maximum advertising $$ possible. NBC has started cutting the running time of shows to include more commercials - right now they are the top “clutter” station.
What bugs me the most are the moments cut out of syndicated Simpsons episodes to allow for more SCREAMING used car dealer commercials. Those fuckers make me want to take a crowbar to my television.
A recent report indicated that two major networks have cracked the 15 minutes per hour advertising barrier during prime time. This trend doesn’t seem to be slowing down.
The worst sports offender, of course, is NASCAR. Luckily, I find that car racing is about as entertaining as professional wrestling (read : not at all), so I don’t have to endure the agony of watching 30 billboards on wheels turn left for 500 miles. I’m just waiting for the day that a NASCAR driver tattoos a Budweiser logo on his forehead. I bet that would pay big endorsement bucks!
Baseball will probably get like this too someday. They’ll have the Microsoft League and the AOL League. The national anthem will “be brought to you” by several corporate sponsers and some of the words of the song will be changed to Coca-Cola jingle lyrics. Most of the fans at the game will be wearing tee shirts with corporate logos, aqcuired from Web sites that offer them 30 cents a day to be walking commercials.
Yup, I have a feeling that it’s only going to get worse from here on out.
A coupla months back I’m flipping through channels and stop for a bit on a NASCAR race (at least I think it was NASCAR). I notice that there are these HUGE logos painted on the track’s infield grass at various points.
I flippity-flip around. Come back to the NASCAR race. The mutherfukkin’ logos on the infield have changed! Am I crazy?!?
No, modern technology can now super-impose logos in such a way as to appear part of “the scenery.” In actuality, they’re just computer generated overlays.
You mysterious ad-changing trick on some baseball games. There’s a green section of the fence to the leff of the screen that can be changed based on the area in which the game is being advertised. The computer is able to determine what the ad should look like from different distances and angles and adjusts it in relation to the camera angle.
If you think ads are the only problem, move to Florida. With Gordon in the Gulf, you can have a 50" TV and get a 14" image. First they take the normal TV image and make it the upper left 25% of the screen. The whole right side is a doppler/radar image. The bottom-left 25% is location/power/size of the storm. Now, with the remaining 25% for the actual TV show (football game, for instance) remove 3% for the score, 7% for the scrolling bar at the bottom, and you are left with 15% of a TV for the actual game. Good thing these hurricane info reports come up for a mere 20 seconds at a time, every 10 minutes.
I hate those weather break-ins that are way too large too, especially when they affect a small area of people and are wimpy (thunderstorm watch etc). Hurricanes would probably concern me more, but I feel your pain.
As for ads on jerseys, look at European soccer teams. Almost as bad as NASCAR. On Arsenal’s jersey, the Dreamcast logo is bigger than the Arsenal logo.