View Full Version : Peeve about network TV: the crap on the bottom of the screen

8.22.17, 4:41 PM
Have you noticed lately that it is almost impossible to watch a TV show without having the image abused and destroyed by advertising on the bottom of the screen?

The least of it is what the TV execs call "the bug" -- the network symbol that is usually in the bottom right corner of the screen. It used to be a semi-transparent logo, like a watermark, but it has grown of late. BBC has it's full name and a short message. Chanel 13 in NYC, has 'THIRTEEN" spelled out and a logo, so it is about almost a quarter of the screen wide!

Every network and station does the bug. Except FX. Go figure. I'd prefer to dislike anything that comes from the bowels of Newscorp, but some of the best shows on TV are on FX, and FX gives every production the respect of NOT PUTTING CRAP ON THE SCREEN!

On the other hand, PBS, which should be the home of thoughtful presentation runs huge, random animated distractions across the entire lower portion of the screen, completely destroying the cogency of the image behind it.

All of the broadcast networks are the worst -- really, who cares? Most of their content that isn't news-ish or sports isn't that attractive anyway. PBS though -- really PBS is the worst, because (a) they should know better, (b)should be better, and (c) you'd like to think that they have some awareness of the photographic integrity of the screen space.

The FX network actually does exhibit fealty to the integrity of the screen. There is never -- or very, very rarely any advertising content on the screen. Not even a logo bug! This gives directors and cinematographers the ability to use the entire screen to tell their story. And they do, with subtlety and beauty. I can still remember scenes from "Mr. Robot" that simply could not have worked on PBS, because PBS would have destroyed the visual drama of the scenes!


8.25.17, 7:15 PM
I guess this is what they are doing now that they are being defunded. They have to compensate for that loss somehow.