Powered by i.TV
October 6, 2015

David Simon says advertising is ruining television

by Bob Sassone, posted Sep 1st 2009 11:02AM
Josephine the PlumberEveryone has an opinion about TV commercials. Some people think that advertising is a cancer that has to be erased, and they fast forward through all of the ads when they record a show. Other people love advertising and understand that commercials pay for a lot of our entertainment options (I would put myself in that category). David Simon, creator of The Wire, is in the former category. Is he right?

Is advertising ruining TV?
Yes! TV would be better without ads.227 (35.2%)
Yes, but we have to live with it.210 (32.6%)
No, ads help pay for shows.207 (32.1%)

[via TV Tattle]

Add a Comment

*0 / 3000 Character Maximum


Filter by:

Umm well considering advertising is older than the medium of television, and has been used since its inception...I dont see how it can be ruining it. Good luck finding any company (or person) to finance any type of mass entertainment without the funding that advertisers give. Sure we don't love ads...but trying to make them go away does nothing of any benefit for anyone.

September 01 2009 at 10:50 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Senator Gunzenhauser

Let's face it, advertising has been around since the dawn of time. Bad writing ruined television. Bad writing and bad execs who made the bad writing even worse.

September 01 2009 at 9:10 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

As much as I don't like media manipulation, I appreciate the impact advertisers can have on programming (e.g., Glenn Beck lost support because viewers petitioned advertisers and advertisers threatened to pull their ad revenue.)

September 01 2009 at 3:50 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I could even live with the commercial interruptions, when they're planned for in a TV show's creation. It's the ONSCREEN advertising during the show, in the form of network bugs, text telling you what you're watching, what's coming next, what new show premieres in only 6 DAYS!, the logos spinning in and out, and all the other visuals (and sometimes audio!) taking up the lower third of the screen. THOSE are killing TV and pushing people to DVDs, where they can watch the show unadorned by all the crap.

September 01 2009 at 2:57 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I think the ads kill the momentum of the show. Even on a DVR I hate having to ff through them cause it kills the flow. I prefer to get the DVD sets and plow through them on my own time. I just finished The Wire series again and I am one episode away from finishing Deadwood season one (Thanks Seattle Public Lib!) and I can notice that I am more invested in the show when I can get in a flow that isn't interrupted by commercials. I understand that you need the ad money to survive but I prefer the limited commercial interruptions that occur on season premiers like the one for Mad Men a couple weeks ago, I think that is the way to go. However even though some of my friends scoff at all the Applebees plugs in Friday Night Lights it is still better than no show!

September 01 2009 at 2:48 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to BDUB's comment

Sounds like you, as am I, are in favour of the system some other countries use, where the programme is shown in one chunk, with ads running before and/or after the show, but not during.

Combine that with Karen's "Just show a real product instead of making something up", Scott's "Kill the cruft cluttering up the bottom third of the screen", add a dollop of "Quit compressing the credits" and I think we could have a workable system.

September 01 2009 at 5:59 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I think advertisements and the medium they are presented on definitely need to be separated from one another.

We have to keep the advertising industry enmeshed with television production, with magazine and newspaper publishing, with web sites - because we need their money to absorb some of the cost. But NO manufacturer should have a say in what's printed in or aired on the newspaper or magazine or TV show that his ad is running in.
As soon as they get censorship leeway, or storyline veto power, the whole system tanks.

Product placement I think is a fine idea if it'll keep my shows on the air - but nobody seems to understand how to do it RIGHT.

All these bone-headed admen grew up watching TV the same as the rest of us, and they know perfectly well how careful every show always had to be to never show the label on anything the characters were using or eating or drinking. To never say the name of a real product. We've been brainwashed from birth to think that's how it's supposed to be - so how in the heck are we supposed to go from THAT to these cornball, painfully obvious, third-wall busting ads?

Half the cast of my soap opera stopping mid-kiss/mid-fight/mid-scheme to suddenly and inexplicably eat Pringles potato chips (While using the word Pringles in every other sentence of dialogue) does not put me in the mood to run out and buy potato chips!

A little subtlety would be SO MUCH more effective. Just "happen" to leave a label readable on screen. That's it! Nothing more! Believe us guys, it'll catch our eye, I promise.

September 01 2009 at 1:38 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Jigsaw hc

Thanks to my handy TiVo I never watch the commercials

September 01 2009 at 1:27 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I just don't like it when the commercials last 5 minutes on some TV shows. That's like taking a chunk of a particular show's plot. Used to be that comedies were 22 minutes out of their 30 minute slots. Now it's 19 in some cases with the 3-, 4- or 5-minute blocks on some shows. Used to be 2-minutes for commercials in the '80s before advertisers extended more of them in those blocks in the '90s and 2000s. Do those networks have to shell out that much cash to advertisers to air those commercials. I come to watch the show, not a batch of ads. That's why you see so many viewers fast forward through the commercials on the VCR or DVRs

September 01 2009 at 1:26 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Patrick R

"Other people love advertising and understand that commercials pay for a lot of our entertainment options (I would put myself in that category)."

You... love ads?

September 01 2009 at 12:59 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Remember when there was no cable and TV was FREE because the advertisers paid for it? Then cable came along and you had to pay for it because there were no commercials. Now cable has tons of commercials AND we pay through the nose for it. What's up with THAT? If we have to sit through so many freaking commercials, cable should be MUCH cheaper, if not FREE!

September 01 2009 at 12:49 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Follow Us

From Our Partners