I’ve written about how to live without television before, but I wasn’t really doing it back then, because I was living with my parents, who had the full cable+Showtime+HBO package. I have to admit, I did enjoy the access to awesome Showtime shows like “Dexter” and “The Tudors.” And getting “LOST” and “Heroes” in HD was rather nice, as well.
But my crazy college schedule included a lot of night classes, and we didn’t own a Tivo or a DVR. So I still ended up watching most of my shows online. Hooking a laptop into a television became no big deal for me, and I would stream episodes directly from the ABC or NBC websites.
It only felt natural to get cable set up as a part of moving into our first apartment. I mean, the cable guy had to come by anyway to set up our cable-based internet connection, so why not order a basic package?
We didn’t, because we don’t need it, and we don’t really use it. Obviously, if you really get use out of a cable package, then it’s probably worth the money for you. But that’s just not true for us — we prefer to support online streaming sites like Hulu because of their flexibility and the way they advance online video. I’m all for paying for things you enjoy and use… but for me, that just doesn’t include cable.
So nearly four months in this apartment now, and still no cable. We don’t even have rabbit ears or a real TV yet. We’ll get there (mostly because I really, really want to get a Nintendo Wii!), but we’re managing just fine without those things. And that, guys, is how you live without television.
There’s been a lot of talk lately about Hulu’s plan to switch to a paid model, and whether I (as a non cable subscriber) would pay for Hulu. The answer is yes, definitely. How much I would pay is what’s really in question, and would have to depend on how the system works and how much advertising there is and a host of other factors. But I would pay because services like Hulu are my preferred content-delivery systems, and I believe in paying for value. And not just in a fluffy “I say that I pay for value but I don’t really mean that” way. I’m the type of person who really likes to vote with her wallet.
So what about you — do you watch television? If so, are you getting it in the way that best fits your lifestyle, or are you paying for a television delivery system that’s not quite working for you? And if the latter is the case, what’s stopping you from switching?