Sirius Radio

Last modified on July 10th, 2006

So Sat. night, on my way back from the wack, I stopped at Future Shop and somehow got suckered into buying a Sirius Satellite radio system. It’s probably a pretty dumb thing to do, since I don’t drive very often, especially now that it’s warm out. But I was in one of my “hey, I’m a guy and I need to buy a gadget from time to time” moods, so I picked it up. Installing it is actually pretty easy — I plugged it in, opened the sunroof, stuck the antenna on my roof, and in about 10 minutes, I was listening to music. My first impression is that it’s pretty cool, although 95% of the 150 channels don’t really interest me. There are a few comedy channels, Howard Stern of course (which most people say is worth the $14/mo by himself), and some various Rock/Electronica stations that I don’t mind. The quality isn’t exacty CD calibre (although they claim it is), but I’ve been told it’s because of the shitty FM transmitter in these devices, and if I wire it right into my deck it will sound alot better. The one thing I’m still not really sure of is what the term “advertising free” means, because that’s really the main selling point for Sirius. In my mind, “Advertising-Free” == “No-Interruptions”, but I can tell that they don’t share the same mindset as me. Often after a song you’ll get a quick pump for the station, or another similar station, or some rock band telling you about a concert. Sure, it’s all music related content, but I’m pretty sure they are sneaking in advertisements here and there.

Which leads into my other big complaint of the weekend — why is everyone ok with 25 minutes worth of commercials in front of every movie? I remember when this concept first came out a few years ago.. I think it started with a simple Stella Artois commercial in front of a movie I was watching.. Everyone was booing and laughing. Hollywood keeps saying that movies are meant to be seen in the theatre, but who the hell wants to watch a movie with 10 ads in front of it. Think of all the extra showings they could have if they got rid of the ads and played an extra movie or two each day. And to top it all off, I don’t understand advertising in general. Who sees a commercial for something and goes out and buys it? Nowadays, I know about the cool gadgets months before they are ready for selling (thanks to slashdot and digg). I know what beer I like — I don’t need a movie screen to tell me. I know milk is good for me — seeing a guy drinking it on the big screen doesn’t make me want to go to the lobby and buy some. Car commercials — most people can’t afford to go buy the cell phone they really want, so how is having a car commercial for a $50,000 car in a movie targetted at teens and young adults going to sell more cars? I’m not a believer in the whole internet advertising thing either. I’m a firm believer than someday when people realize that advertising generally doesn’t work anymore, that companies like Yahoo and Google are going to disappear rather quickly. I don’t know a single person that clicks on google adsense ads when they’re bored,and hardly any people other than a few of my friends actually buy things online.

If Dr. Evil was here, I’m sure he’d be looking at me sadly and going “you just don’t get it, do you?”

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