Wednesday, April 13, 2005


LESS IS (or can be) MORE

TV advertising time has increased dramatically in the last few years. I just received a special gift from my sweetheart (who fortunately also is my wife!). It's a box set of 4 DVDs of the old Mork and Mindy show. That show was the one that introduced me to Robin Williams and his amazing talents. When we watched the first of these DVDs, I noticed that it was 26 minutes long without commercials. Today, a typical TV show is only 22 minutes long. That's DOUBLE (from 4 minutes to 8 minutes) what it used to be in the time of Mork and Mindy. I don't know if this was an FCC regulation change or what. But it made me remember that, back in the old days, when a commercial came on, I usually watched it, because if I went to the refrigerator or the lavatory, I might find that I had missed part of the show upon my return. Nowadays, (and I've timed this) on many channels there is a 4-MINUTE-LONG commercial break. I don't know how that has worked out for you, but here's what I've learned to do:
  • flip to CNN headline news or any other interesting channel while clocking FOUR minutes. I usually can get back to my program without missing a beat.
  • mute and read a book.
  • watch two shows at the same time: 20 some minutes of one and 10 or so minutes of the 2nd favorite in the same 1/2 hour.
  • Have plenty of time in the privy for whatever suits my fancy.

So, the end result of pushing MORE ads out there for me has been to find more creative ways to avoid them. Therefore MORE has become less effective. And I remember LESS (or fewer) being MORE effective, because I actually watched them.

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