Sunday, November 28, 2004

A media grump

No, the title to this post does not refer to Ann Coulter; if it did, it would be titled A media skank, which is a horse of a different color. But then again, so is Ann.

Anyway, I was looking online for a copy of the (in)famous Monday Night Football promo that has everyone so up in arms. I wanted to see if it really was as scandalous as the press is making it out to be. So many people are apologizing about this promo, I'm surprised that CBS and NBC haven't apologized for it at this point.

Unfortunately, even with the Internet being the amazing content delivery system that it is, I can't find it anywhere for download. The Dallas Morning News has a version available for streaming, and iFilm may have the same thing, but I can't seem to get anything at their site to play. But neither site will let you download the clip, just stream it in a separate window.

I hate streaming video. Yes, I realize I'm the last person on Earth that uses a modem, but streaming means that the DMN crappy version is a useless slideshow with audio that cuts in and out, even after setting my preferences in WMP to the lowest possible quality. And god forbid you press the pause button. Resuming streamed video from "pause" is a 50/50 proposition at best.

You know, I really don't mind waiting 20 or 30 minutes to download a movie file if I know the quality is going to be better, and that I'll be able to view the whole clip through without getting RealVideo's obscenity-inducing "buffering ... buffering ... buffering" every five seconds. I'll just start the download and go off and do something else for 15 minutes. I do have an attention span longer than a camera flash, really.

OK, I understand that these sites want to make sure that you view the movie clip along with their ads, and links to other locations on their site that I'll never use. That's fine. They have to pay the bills, too. Just embed those in the video, and let me download the freaking thing already.

1 comment:

David said...

Hey I'm with you completely! And i have a fairly fast broadband connection. Even with that, streaming video is atrocious and i usually just don't bother with it. Yes - i still get the stopping and starting and the buffering - and even with the highest quality settings, so much has to be sacrificed to get the damn thing down the wire that it is almost useless anyway! An array of smudges wandering about in a tiny little porthole. Compared to a well-prepared AVI or MKV file, streaming is just trash. WHY do they do this to us?? That and region coding on DVDs represents one of the greatest incentives to read books i know of!