Sunday, 13 June 2010

Technology is a queer thing. It brings you great gifts with one hand, and it stabs you in the back with the other. C.P. Snow, NY Times, 15-3-71

I am not a fan of football. I don’t support a team, and I switch off when conversation turns to the subject. However, when it comes to sport, I do consider myself to be patriotic and I show my support for global events. I get very passionate about the Olympics in particular. Anyway, I managed to be convinced on Friday night to come out on Saturday and join the guys to watch the England v USA match.

I joined them in town at 5pm, and we moved onto our local Conservative Club at about 6pm to get a good seat by the TV.

At 6:30 the TV got switched onto a music channel doing a countdown of the 10 best “Football” songs. I’d have preferred they went onto BBC1 and let me watch Doctor Who before the match, but when I voiced this suggestion I was greeted with a number of grumbles and I decided to just continue drinking my cider.

So, the game started at 7:30pm. Three minutes in and England scored their goal. I’m not going to pretend to know the players, or even the jargon used. But it was evident that people were very happy with the goal and who scored it.

I love that I have a phone that allows me to be connected to the internet at all times. At minute five, I found out via Facebook that apparently some people were silly enough to decide to watch the game on a channel that has ADVERTS. Now this baffles me. ITV HD can broadcast the game and do what they want with it. If they put adverts on, so be it. But if you are truly a fan of the game and want to watch every minute of it, why would you decide to watch it on that channel, where you could potentially miss out on crucial parts of the match?! Which you did!

I’m assuming the reason behind these people’s choices is HD. Now, I love HD. I have a HD TV, and I am a girl that likes her technology. But sometimes, isn’t it worth remembering that colour television was only broadcast in the UK for the first time in 1967? If I’m not mistaken that was the year AFTER England won the World Cup for the first and only time.

Hmmm, I wonder if the people watching that match in 1966 sat there 20 minutes in and thought “this is crap. If only it was in High Definition on a 70 inch flat screen. And you know what? If it was in 3D I’m stop my moaning too!”.

No. They were probably just drunkenly going on about how great it is they could watch the game on a 14 inch black and white telly! The following year, when BBC2 showed Wimbledon in colour, people couldn’t believe it. It was like living in the future!

We really do take our technology for granted these days. We are a spoilt generation, and we still bitch about it. When my mum was 24, she didn’t spend her Sunday afternoon typing her blog on her Samsung netbook, while keeping up to date on Facebook via her HTC Desire phone, and catching up on last nights Doctor Who on her 32 inch HD TV.

No, when she was 24, it was 1989. Sky TV was only just introduced in the UK, and it was the only way you could watch The Simpsons. The GameBoy was launched in Japan, and Microsoft started distributing their first versions of Office, which was not used in homes because people just didn’t have home PCs, or if you did you either had a lot of money, or you’d built it yourself and you were an old-style geek, which I applaud.

So, football fans. Stop bitching about how crap ITV was and take some responsibility for your CHOICE to watch the match on a channel where you KNEW you could miss out. Count your blessings, realise how lucky you are to live in a time where you can do, see and own all you have.

It’d be interesting to see how many complaints ITV have when they open their emails on Monday morning.

1 comment:

  1. So what, the goal was scored during adverts or something?
    I remember getting sky when it was very new. I was excited cos it meant that we could change channels without getting off our arses...our tv didn't have a remote control!!! Ans I remember watching the simpsons. and Nickleodeon when it was just the one channel.
    Hurrah technology. Even though I am probably a technophobe really. Certainly always a bit behind with technology.