One of the great things about a new job is adjusting to and getting to know new people. So over the last couple of weeks, especially after Christmas, I’ve had the “no I didn’t watch that, I don’t have a TV” and had to explain why not.
So I thought I’d answer some of the questions here.
1) Why not?
When I moved into this flat, I had to move a lot of books and stuff out of storage. It was a big job, the money I had available was limited, so it was a choice between buy a TV and pay for a TV license or pay for two men and a big van to help me move my possessions. I’d been living with my uncle and our viewing tastes were very different, so I didn’t watch a lot of TV. Then I spent 6 weeks at my mum’s and she doesn’t have a TV, so I knew that I could do without one for a while so I picked the removal men!
2) Do you think TV is bad for you?
No, there’s some fantastic TV out there. Ok, so not Celebrity Big Brother and I’m not a great lover of EastEnders but there’s been some amazing stuff this year, Sherlock, The Hour, Spiral, The Fades…the list goes on..
3) What does all your furniture point at?
That middle of the room. See below
4) Will you ever get a TV?
At this stage in the game, probably not, there are many other things I would like in this flat that I would prioritise over having a TV, like a new wardrobe and a kitchen aid for example!!
5) How do you know what’s happening in the world if you never watch the News?
The short answer is Radio 4! The longer answer is newspapers, the radio, the internet and sometimes Twitter!
6) Do you miss it?
No. I live in the age of DVD’s, BBC iPlayer and iTunes, so I can still watch TV shows that I want to watch. The advantage being that I get to be more selective and hopefully watch better TV (though I should confess that I am quite taken with The Vampire Diaries). Although I think that’s a trend generally and doesn’t just apply to the way I watch TV. The only time I really missed it was during the World Cup, football on the radio is not the same.
7) Do you find that you get more done because you’re not watching TV?
Sometimes. Not the weekend I got The Wire boxset but I have found since being back at work, when I get home from work and/or the gym, by the time, I’ve eaten, cleared up, made tomorrow’s lunch and sorted out the various things I need to do (rubbish, ironing, cleaning, talking to Ma, mindless wondering around the internet, checking Twitter etc) it’s almost time for bed and I just read until bedtime. Remembering back to when I did have a TV, it’s less likely that I’ll come home and just sit around in front of the box, but I am the world’s laziest person though and I don’t need a TV to ensure that I sit around doing nothing all evening, I can do that with books or the internet!
8) Is it fair that you watch TV on BBC iPlayer and don’t pay for a TV license?
Probably not. The current rules state that if you don’t have a TV license, you can’t watch live television. I’m pretty law abiding and stick to that rule. So I can’t watch Sherlock as it is being broadcast, I have to wait until later. iPlayer did have a helpful little screen that popped up and reminded you if you clicked on something that was still being broadcast. (I just checked and that seems not to be there now, which is a shame). However, I’d be ok with paying a form of license fee for the radio and iPlayer if it came to that, but as it is, I’m obeying the law and I do pay tax, which also funds the BBC. If I want to watch anything on the ITV, C4 or C5 players, I have to sit through adverts like everyone else who doesn’t own a Tivo box thing. I buy DVD’s and have also bought series passes on iTunes, so I do pay for what I watch and don’t feel that guilty.
9) Do you think it’s wrong/bad etc that I have a TV?
No, no and no. My choices are mine and not a judgement of yours. It’s really stupid to say that all TV is bad and to believe that not having a TV in any way makes you happier, more clever or more intellectual than people who do is just wrong and not very bright. So I don’t do it.
I think that covers it, but if anyone else has any other questions, ask!