Tuesday, May 6, 2008


I'm cynical, probably too cynical. In any case, I know that I pay more attention than most and I usually see things from a jaded point of view. But even when I can step back and try to not allow my cynicism to cloud every aspect of my judgment of others, I still wonder how people can be naive.

Here in France the consumer (for the seller) rates somewhere between a rock and that piece of shit that you stepped in on your way to the store, but the government fully protects your right to be ignorant, stupid and otherwise worthless. However, people still manage to feel like they've been taken advantage. Case in point: TVs.

When I bought my SORNY, I did the research, I looked around, I found the right price for the right TV. I tried to inform myself as much as possible about the different norms and such. The current norm for SD digital TV broadcasts is mpeg2. Unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on your POV, I guess), HD can not be broadcast over the mpeg2 norm. I don't know why. I don't give a flying fuck why. For the roll-out (scheduled for early summer 2008) of HD OTA broadcasts a new mpeg4 norm is going to be used. The digital tuners that were in 99% of the flat screen TVs sold until the end of 2007 only process mpeg2. Which means that you can't get HD OTA on most TVs. Allegedly they are going to start selling mpeg4 tuners (or converters or something) that will slide into the PCMCIA slot on the back of most recent-generation TVs.

This isn't enough for some people, who cry foul. They claim that the TV manufacturers purposefully sold under-equipped their equipment to try to get more money from you later on. Despite the fact that this is absolutely idiotic because the TV manufacturers will not manufacture or distribute these cards, so fucking what if they did? As with anything, the point is to sell the product. Just because a product is classed "HD Ready" or "Full HD" (which like gas mileage estimates are government-determined classifications), doesn't mean that it can wash your laundry or act as a sexual aide in the bedroom (which BTW are now sold in the toothbrush aisle at my local supermarket, no shitting).

My problem is two-fold: 1) The government couldn't pull their heads out of their asses for long enough to decide until mid-2007 what standardized norm they were going to use for HD OTA broadcasts and 2) French consumers spent 4 billion euros on HD "products" in 2007. At least a few of those people must have been well-enough informed to know that their mpeg2 tuner wouldn't work, yet they pulled the trigger (I knew and I did it too). Yet you have these asshats whose sole goal in life is to bitch and whine and moan and claim that everything that has happened to them is the fault of others. It's called capitalism asshole. The companies do not have you in mind when they sell you that product. They have the almighty ollar in mind.

These are the same people who buy the cheapest TV or car or Total Excellium and then they bitch because it doesn't work.

Man, I hate people.

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