Interestingly we are finally seeing the truth about Internet based TV (OTT): It is just another form of PayTV on an unregulated transmission medium, dah! dah! Sorry about that but it is nothing earth shattering; however it finally has people writing about this obvious fact. The ‘do-it-yourself’ package is described in this recent Advanced Television article: Cord Cutting Unrealistic Option is seen as probably costing even more for a consumer than a packaged payTV Operator offer. Not only that, the author Colin Mann quotes Alan Wolk of TDG who states that there is no ‘User Interface’ that makes for a cohesive and pleasant experience. In a previous blog post Changing the transmission media not the business model I had already highlighted the issues of more or at least same cost and clearly noted the backwards move in terms of experience. However there is another very important issue, which has not been addressed by the ‘oracles’ of the future of TV and that is ‘unregulated access to content’. Most DIY bundles have Apps that require access to Internet content – There is no Age Verification required. That is an oversight in a very mobile, smartphone driven society. So I have also been wondering when the ‘Do-it-yourself’ payTV bundle and free for all access might come under the scrutiny of the Regulators for both Consumer and Child Protection issues?
I already see that my very young children are exposed to some terrible things via the increasingly pornographic Internet, via Twitter feeds, via search engines etc. Now that TV is a watch what-you-want-when-you-want experience on the Internet it requires parents to be careful – The so called ‘watershed’ does not exist on the Internet and there appears to be no regulation apart from personal parental control, which has to set on a myriad of channels, devices and websites – BUT ISN’T. That is almost a full time job in this mobile-free-for-all-do-it-yourself-media-world. I happen to care! I try to protect my offspring as much as possible from the gratuitous violence, sex and ever increasing psychopathic, narcissistic media offerings… (e.g. Walter White toy figures for sale at Toys-R-US). However, I am fighting against adversity, especially if my 12 year-old is exposed to shows like ‘Breaking Bad’ as well as a myriad of free ‘Porn’ on a classmates smartphone browser at school. I cannot supervise every moment of my son’s viewing habits outside of the home…and we happily tout OTT (Internet TV) as an in and out of the home experience. We are also told that youngsters don’t watch Big Screen TV anymore – So where is the protection for the young, the vulnerable and the stupid in this mobile-free-for-all-do-it-yourself-media-world?
Not all parents care what their children are exposed to that is why we have regulation. The regulators should be ahead of the game and not late like they have been with Music Videos, finally realizing that they should be ‘rated’. In 2015 that is very, very late … Listening to my very, very young daughter signing ‘I wanna Sex You Up’, now exposed to ‘twerking’ – This is just not right! We have a constant battle to keep them well grounded and not let their malleable minds be damaged. I am not a prude and we have a healthy open relationship with the kids, but I cannot be the good parent if all around me doesn’t care and exposes them to the ever failing controls of the world’s what-you-want-when-you-want media access.
Why TV shows that contain Drugs, Sex, Bigotry and Violence on the Internet be treated any different to that on Broadcast TV is beyond me!