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 Post subject: Has anyone ever given up television?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 24, 2015 1:21 pm 
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Lactose Intolerant...Literally

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I'm wondering if anyone here has ever given up watching tv and instead used that tv time for other purpose? If you did, what did you do instead? Did you enjoy your time away from tv? And how long did you stop watching and did you go back to it later? and if you did, what made you go back to viewing? Or have you ever thought maybe tv isn't right for you?

I really wonder if tv is worth the effort anymore. I get so much more out of books these days.


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 Post subject: Re: Has anyone ever given up television?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 24, 2015 1:28 pm 
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I've never been much of a TV person. I would prefer not to have one in my house since it is basically a bookshelf, but my husband disagrees. But I've always preferred reading to watching TV. And I would much rather listen to a podcast and knit than watch TV after a tough workday (in fact, that is Tuesday nights in my house if I'm not busy- my husband has his soccer practice and I stay home and knit.
BUT I think this must have a lot to do with how you are raised. I grew up not really watching TV and think of it as idle time- my siblings see it as basically the air they breathe and would never even consider giving it up.

I suppose it is kind of like giving up beer- if you don't like beer, then easy peasy. If you are a beer lush like me, the very thought shakes you to the bone!!

I wonder what you would rather be doing than watching TV?

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 Post subject: Re: Has anyone ever given up television?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 24, 2015 1:29 pm 
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Dr Bronners, MD
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I'm at the end of my PhD now. When I was in high school (and prior) I was either watching TV or reading a book. I was pretty obsessed with different fandoms. When I started college, I lived in a redwood forest and pretty much stopped watching TV cold turkey (like, not even in the common rooms) because it was so much better to be outdoors. I haven't ever managed to get back into it. Not having a TV helps ;) Right now, I'm trying to improve my Dutch, which means watching 15 minutes of TV news (online broadcasts) a day. That's ok. (More dangerous is my social media habit, which I'm currently trying to break. Mostly that means I'm better focused on writing my PhD during the day. But on the weekends, I'm still trying to find a way to re-rhythm my downtime. I was also a furious reader, and love it, really!, but not as "down time" when I read 150-200 pages of scientific research per week.)

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 Post subject: Re: Has anyone ever given up television?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 24, 2015 1:39 pm 
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Dr Bronners, MD
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Peri wrote:
I'm wondering if anyone here has ever given up watching tv and instead used that tv time for other purpose? If you did, what did you do instead? Did you enjoy your time away from tv? And how long did you stop watching and did you go back to it later? and if you did, what made you go back to viewing? Or have you ever thought maybe tv isn't right for you?


Do you mean all video entertainment, or do you mean not sitting down to watch whatever's on? There are a lot of ways to watch TV these days...

If you mean sitting down to watch whatever's on, I've never really been able to do that. I find commercials really tedious, and having to make time when I'm doing other stuff is annoying.

Over the past few years as downloadable TV shows have become easier to do, I've switched entirely to watching stuff online. This means I can only watch shows I'm interested in and only have to watch them when I want to and have time (and if I want to not bother, well, I haven't missed anything. I can watch it whenever I feel like it again).

It helps that there aren't a _lot_ of programs I want to watch in the first place, so I can pick those and skip everything else. I'd rather pay 30 bucks for a season of a show I want to watch on iTunes than $200/month for cable TV that's mostly terrible junk I don't want to watch at all ever...

So I think that works pretty well for me.

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 Post subject: Re: Has anyone ever given up television?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 24, 2015 1:54 pm 
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i didn't have a tv when i was in university - but still watched some shows via downloading/streaming. it cut away mindlessly turning the tv and just watching what was on, but also makes it much easier to binge on good shows because it's all there at your finger tips. i'm a person that likes to 'do' things, so i'll usually be working on art, exercising, taking night school/courses (atm, this option takes up all my time fortunately/unfortunately) instead of watching tv. (i also listen to a lot of podcasts - now that i think of it - for this reason)

i do have access to cable/netflix now because of my living situation, but since i got out of the habit of watching, i rarely use it unless there is something i really want to watch, and even then it's usually background noise for crochet/knitting.


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 Post subject: Re: Has anyone ever given up television?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 24, 2015 2:07 pm 
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Lactose Intolerant...Literally

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Just tv in general, like reality tv or what's on at 8pm. Ever since tv went to digital (we're still on analog) I've notice I'm not missing much, but old habits die hard. I primarily watch whatever on Hulu. I think I'm trying to find something to keep boredom away but it's still not satisfying. And then I find myself sitting on my arse for two or three hours at a time, Hulu surfing. It seems like such a waste of valuable time.

My hubby doesn't watch any tv. Unless it's football. He reads fiction.


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 Post subject: Re: Has anyone ever given up television?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 24, 2015 3:02 pm 
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I don't own a TV, haven't had one for about 10 years. Sometimes I watch a series of things at my boyfriend's house (last one was Homeland, before that Orphan Black, and before that I think it was Arrested Development or the Great British Bake Off) but it can be weeks or months between TV watching episodes for me and I don't really miss it.

When I first stopped watching TV I did a lot of crafting (mostly costume jewellery) and even sold some of the stuff I made, but I've been increasing my internet use over the years and really I waste a lot of time surfing that could probably be more productively used. I read a lot of e-books as well.

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 Post subject: Re: Has anyone ever given up television?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 24, 2015 4:30 pm 
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I don't think you'll miss it if you give it up. It's easy to fill that time with music, books, or whatever else you like to do. I play soccer with a guy who doesn't watch TV. He never gets any movie or TV references (even Star Wars or Princess Bride), but other than that he has a normal life. Other than being a lot more active and fit than most people.


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 Post subject: Re: Has anyone ever given up television?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 24, 2015 4:35 pm 
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I dont think that watching tv shows is necessarily more wasted time than reading, especially now that were in the grand age of tv shows. I don't think re-watching a good tv show is more a "waste of time" than reading for leisure.

I don't own a tv but I watch DVDs and tv shows online. I sometimes stop doing it but I dont really use the time for anything better. Id much more prefer wasting time online with just random internet surfing.

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 Post subject: Re: Has anyone ever given up television?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 24, 2015 4:52 pm 
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We gave it up 5 years ago. The programming here is pretty bad most of the time. Sometimes I miss channels like Film 4 but not bad enough to look for it.

We read, listen to music, write, play instruments, play with the guinea pigs. We still have a tv and use it to watch movies sometimes, but we don't do that as much as we used to.


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 Post subject: Re: Has anyone ever given up television?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 24, 2015 5:13 pm 
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I was a genuine TV addict. (Or that's how it felt.) I watched a few hours of TV every night. There were plenty of shows I just "couldn't" miss. We were always trying to moderate our TV viewing, coming up with different systems and bargains. Our yearly vacation in the spring (to a place with no TVs) was embarrassingly challenging for me. Then about 10 years ago, after our vacation, I decided to keep not watching.

I waste plenty of time online. I watch movies (and old TV shows) we rent from the library. I watch some Korean dramas on my phone. I'll watch TV at the gym. But except for things like the Olympics or election night coverage, I never sit and watch TV. I haven't had a show I "had to" watch for around a decade. I haven't seen a single episode of any of the big (or little) programs in that time, either. I have cut myself off from that whole world of popular culture.

This hadn't made me the better, more interesting person I hoped it would. But I'm still happy with my choice.

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 Post subject: Re: Has anyone ever given up television?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 24, 2015 5:18 pm 
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I grew up in a household that tv was always on. Right now, my husband and watch 1 tv show/night (usually 30 to 60 minutes) during dinner. Sometimes we might watch a movie or another tv show but usually it is an hour or less per night.

We have a netflix subscription for our tv shows/movies but I think the biggest change is not watching commercials. Of course there are other ways to 'waste time' but I'm glad we gave up cable. (We gave up cable 8 or 9 years ago)

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 Post subject: Re: Has anyone ever given up television?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 24, 2015 11:19 pm 
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I grew up without a TV (or a computer...), and although I watch some streaming shows a few nights a week, I'm probably more content to go without it than most people I know, and to spend time reading or crafting instead. I try not to be such an old fart lamenting about "kids these days" but I do feel that a lot of screen time of any sort is not the best for developing brains, so my 2.5 year old daughter hasn't watched any so far. I don't think it really matters what adults with a fully formed prefrontal cortex do with their time.


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 Post subject: Re: Has anyone ever given up television?
PostPosted: Wed Feb 25, 2015 1:04 am 
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I cannot remember the last time we had the television on aside from using it to watch dvds. We read several newspapers a day, lots of books, and listen to Radio 4 / Radio 3.

When I grew up (with a stay at home mother) the telly was on for half an hour a day ... I used to watch Romper Room while my mother washed the kitchen floor.

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 Post subject: Re: Has anyone ever given up television?
PostPosted: Wed Feb 25, 2015 1:08 am 
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We don't have a TV, but we generally do evening screen time on our laptops. Occasionally that involves streaming some series or documentary, or even listening to a podcast, but usually it's just reading about whatever interests us on the internet, and in my case, catching up on emails and writing that I didn't manage to do while chasing my toddler around during the day. I also read books exclusively from the library using OverDrive on my iPhone, so they're light and portable and always at hand.

So, yes, we've given up television in the traditional sense but I think we've replaced it with basically a modern equivalent. I much prefer this because it's more actively pursuing our interests and on our own schedule, but in our case not having a television doesn't necessarily mean we're more productive than we would otherwise be - although we're not trying to be, as we really value the downtime.


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 Post subject: Re: Has anyone ever given up television?
PostPosted: Wed Feb 25, 2015 1:57 am 
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I threw out the last TV I had to check for my father (who was a tv-technician when still working and didn't have time to check the clients' tvs himself since he was working hard) 2001. Never missed it - still don't miss it. Have lots of other hobbies as well - reading, cooking, baking, sewing (and lots of other textile crafts!), gardening (nowadays having a mini-mini-garden on my balcony), linux-computers, painting, music, choir singing and so on ...

I even did disasseble and deposit the computer I had back then when our public-service-conglomerate went nuts and thought they could charge EVERY household for a TV by classifiying any computer (even old 286:es!) as "tv-sets". Thankfully that approach was declared against some other laws and thus I can have a computer again even if I mostly can't afford an internet connection now when unemployed and just can get some GB now and then if my mother sends me some spare money for that purpose.
(IF they want everyone to pay for "stone-age" stupid one-way-communication aka brainwashing aka time-stealing they should imho make it some form of tax and definitely relate it to the income, NOT charging everyone a fixed sum - which for the poorest does amount to one whole monthly subsistence!)...

But then I always have and still do prefer reading to watching. I have always had a very active imagination and mostly the "pictures in my head" are way better (and way less gory, way less chliché-laden, more slowly-moving and more beautiful!) than the spoon-feed things on film or TV. I do have a few favorite films and those on the other hand I can watch and rewatch over and over again (like my favorite books) - but even there reading the books give me infinitely more than any watching could do.

It might help that I grew up without a computer - and we even back when I was a little girl didn't constantly have a tv-set since often my father would lend our set to a client when he had to take that client's tv home for more labour-intensive repairing.


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 Post subject: Re: Has anyone ever given up television?
PostPosted: Wed Feb 25, 2015 6:28 am 
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When I was doing my degree, I didn't have a TV......so yeah for 3 years.

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 Post subject: Re: Has anyone ever given up television?
PostPosted: Wed Feb 25, 2015 8:38 am 
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I like TV for background noise more than anything. There's only one show that U.S. "must watch" for me - Coronation Street.

I think after the winter we might get rid of our satellite and go back to the digital antenna. That $65 a month could go elsewhere and Netflix has a lot of good stuff now.

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 Post subject: Re: Has anyone ever given up television?
PostPosted: Wed Feb 25, 2015 9:15 am 
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Moon you and my Grandma would get along - she LOVES love loves Coronation Street and watches the SAME episode twice in the same week (the first time when it airs during the week and then the second time when they play it on the weekend).

We haven't had a TV in a few years. We do stream things on our laptops though. I think we do a bit too much of that, particularly in the winter. It's so cold out that we don't go out for walks or bike rides or anything in the evening like we do in the summer.

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 Post subject: Re: Has anyone ever given up television?
PostPosted: Wed Feb 25, 2015 10:04 am 
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lobsteriffic wrote:
Moon you and my Grandma would get along - she LOVES love loves Coronation Street and watches the SAME episode twice in the same week (the first time when it airs during the week and then the second time when they play it on the weekend)


I also do this, not ashamed! But in my own defence I usually miss one or two episodes during the week because of work.

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 Post subject: Re: Has anyone ever given up television?
PostPosted: Wed Feb 25, 2015 10:34 am 
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WELFARIST!
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Moon wrote:
lobsteriffic wrote:
Moon you and my Grandma would get along - she LOVES love loves Coronation Street and watches the SAME episode twice in the same week (the first time when it airs during the week and then the second time when they play it on the weekend)


I also do this, not ashamed! But in my own defence I usually miss one or two episodes during the week because of work.


I think she does it because sometimes she nods off during an episode during the week (I mean, the lady is in her 80's!).

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 Post subject: Re: Has anyone ever given up television?
PostPosted: Wed Feb 25, 2015 11:19 am 
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I don't own a tv, like many here. I grew up in a very tv-rationed house, and I think the annoyance of having a tv on constantly in the background rubbed off on me. Thanks, Mom. That being said, I do sometimes watch episodes of things on my laptop when the Internet that I borrow is strong enough. I don't have a lot of down time though, so I listen to podcasts or NPR when I cook and read when I'm able to find a book that catches my attention.

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