THE CABLE STRATEGY TRAGEDY: Too easy, I know, and sad but almost always unsaid, so I’ll say it. This is just the latest shoe-to-drop and consequence of cable TV’s not-too-long-ago obsession with “reality TV” and “over-the-top” characters that eventually helped put yet another nail in cable TV’s coffin. Just 10 or so years ago, the type of exploitive, follow-the-leader programming featuring folks like Josh Dugger was what so many US cable programmers were seemingly searching out en masse. Not just TLC (The “Learning” Channel) either, so let’s don’t just pick on them. It was almost all of the network basic cable industry. All together, all at once.
The groupthink was so endemic that the channels may as well have been owned by the same company (indeed, many were) and run by one know-it-all executive. Travel pivoted to paranormal (huh?), MTV to Ridiculist & Catfish 24/7, Discovery to “all Alaska, all the time,” History to anything but history. Speaking of history, Nat Geo sure stained its once-proud history. Bravo, VH1, BET, the list goes on. Storytellers, documentarians, or anyone or idea with a positive message were cast aside, derided as “too earnest,” and shunned in favor of these “over-the-top” characters that were anything but reality. Was cable simply a mirror to society? Is Josh Dugger a mirror? Pro-life but pro-child porn? Hard to get my brain around that one, or who the genius was that greenlit a show about his clownish life.
Stupid TV for Stupid People? Whatever the market supposedly called for, this is what cable tv delivered.
But can’t TV do better? Wouldn’t that have been just as good, or perhaps even better for business in the long term, considering where cable ended up? Alas, this strategy may have been good for short-term ratings during basic cable TV’s dive to the bottom, but as it turns out, many of these “stars” were big-time losers in life (and eventual brand killers).
Today it’s these once-powerful cable tv networks that are the laugh-track afterthought. Broadcasters can hopefully learn from Cable’s recent mistakes. TV doesn’t have to just tear down and exploit. It can also uplift, and it should when it can. Moral compasses aren’t just for people… they’re for media companies as well.
PS Note the photo from another Josh Dugger scandal. He’s “pro-life.”
Reality TV’s Josh Duggar Gets 12 Years In Child Porn Case
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (AP) — Former reality TV star Josh Duggar was sentenced Wednesday to about 12 1/2 years in prison after he was convicted of receiving child… Read the reset of the article HERE