Sunday, August 23, 2015

How Many Channels...

How many television channels must you have such that there is never "nothing" on?

The question is both harder and easier than it looks. It all depends on who is doing the answering, what their tastes are in television and entertainment, both where they overlap and where they don't, and how forgiving they are in finding satisfaction in watching something they don't actually like.

For me, that answer is simple and (to some people) deceptively small: One channel.

I don't use a television set for television programming. I use my set for video games and streaming media. While it could be argued that each of my auxiliary cords is a different channel (HDMI 1, HDMI 2, Component 1, etc), I prefer to see it as aux-or-off. Unless you count "off" as a channel (like counting the absence of color a color of its own), my count is decidedly one.

But that won't hold true for everybody. Some people are wholly dependent on television programming for entertainment, at which point their tastes and their forgiveness are what determine their minimum number.

When I speak of "forgiveness," what I mean is: how willing are you to watch something you don't enjoy watching in order to pass the time to get to a new selection of programming choices. If you have a high level of forgiveness, you can get by with fewer channels. If you have a low level of forgiveness, either you must have more channels, or the channels that you do have must be specific choices; last time I checked, there's no TSP (television service provider) that charges you based on how many channels you can pick and choose from their selection rather than being forced to choose between predetermined packages.

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