"Je n'ai qu'une vie. Je ne la regarderai pas
passer par procuration devant un poste de télévision"
Too much information running through your brain?
This year, create some thinking space by leaving your TV screen
blank for one week. You'll be one of millions of people around the
world joining this TV fast. The short term goal of this social
ritual is to encourage more people to create their own brand of
entertainment -- a powerful gesture of consumer sovereignty. The
broader goal is to draw attention to the fact that a handful of
megacorporations now control the global information superstructure
and routinely censor opinions that challenge their interests and
While the television universe has been expanding, the number of
corporations that control it has been steadily shrinking. Right
now, television is controlled by seven megacorporations in the US
and strongly dominated by three worldwide. Our 5000-channel
universe has become limited by a narrow scope of corporate filters
-- ones driven by the interests of big-money sponsors like the
global auto makers, oil companies and the fast-food and fashion
As media concentration has increased, diversity of opinion has
decreased. Viewpoints that challenge sponsors' interests have been
virtually eliminated from the world's most powerful medium.
Television has become a mass merchandizing tool, and in the
process, we the people have been effectively shut out of the
In fact, it would appear that freedom of opinion and expression do
not exist on the airwaves.
3 heures 40 de télévision par
jour, c'est la dose moyenne par français
Soir après soir, nous
sommes assis durant de longues heures face à une lumière scintillante. Les mêmes images
pénètrent nos cerveaux, uniformisent nos
existences, nos connaissances, nos goûts, nos
désirs. Nous passons plus d'heures à regarder
des émissions sur la nature qu'à la vivre dans
sa réalité ; plus de temps à rire des
plaisanteries à la télévision
qu'à plaisanter nous-mêmes ; plus de temps
à regarder des scènes simulées de sexualité qu'à faire l'amour.
Notre psychique est
submergé par les assauts de milliers d'images jouant avec notre sensibilité, notre affect. Des millions de
spots publicitaires conditionnent notre inconscient
collectif et façonnent l'idéologie dominante de la télévision. Une idéologie
où la jouissance immédiate par la consommation
prime sur toute volonté de sens. A force de
répétition, notre capacité d'attention
se trouve diminuée, notre imagination et notre esprit critique s'épuisent, et nous avons de plus de plus de
mal à nous consacrer aux valeurs essentielles.
"Une semaine sans
télévision" est une tentative collective pour
sauvegarder notre plus précieuse ressource:
Fravia's own contribution
The no-TV week promoted by
IMO a worthy initiative, which deserves to be better known. There are many attempts
nowadays to 'take back' the most worthy of our possessions: our life and our time from
the icy grasp of the commercial bastards that would like to have us watching their
crap when we are inside a lift (targeted ads in lifts, EU), when we are
travelling through railways
tunnel (stroboscopic ads in the tunnels, CH) and even when we will look at the
evening sky (laser ads projects, States). There are some first signs of resistence...
more and more people are for instance now demanding that shops REMAIN CLOSED on
sunday, so that their kids have at least a day that is different from all the others
(for whatever purpose -bar buying things- they'll find fit), and some other
are even introducing unilaterally another "no consume" day in their weeks
chosen wednesday) so that at least twice a week
you can do something more interesting than visiting with
your kids a mall (where you are [conditioned to buy] things that you
do not need). But TV, this 'whip to spur the slaves to consume' must be countered as well.
No TV for a whole week: a worthy initiative indeed... it wont be difficult for
me to adhere, since - as I
wrote long ago - one of my most peculiar endowments is the capacity of
NON watching for months any TV at all.
I will be sincere: I must confess that I still watch TV every now and then, though these
already short periods are indeed shrinking to nil. There is a channel here in
Europe, [Arte] which is
a public Franco-German broadcast, with a relative low level of advertisement, that is supposed to
cater to quality, not to audience rate. This channel actually does at times
broadcast something of interest.
Anyway - just in case - one should
never watch TV "directly": of course we should give
our videorecorders the important task to 'watch television' at our place.
Apparates slurp thus all advertisement so that humans can (later, eventually, maybe) examine
whatever is supposed to have had some interest, fast-forwarding over
any moronical interruption.
I believe that at least some squares, in many towns of our
planet, should have statues of the
inventor of the videorecorder (whoever he was). He gave us freedom from TV, a very difficult
task. Note also that it is relatively easier to avoid watching videorecorders :-) Heil to the
inventor of the videorecorder! Greek heroes' fatigues pale when
confronted with such a beficial feat!
So -as I was saying- I do at times watch some telefilms I am interested in, indeed, but
already in the late eighties I stopped watching what the slavemasters sarcastically call 'information' on
TV. Even checking (collating) the same info on -say- a French, a German and an
English channel did not bring me nowhere. Same bunch of pre-formatted lies. The concerted propaganda is truly
'transnational'... in its most abominable forms.
You'll find [elsewhere] on my site a discussion about the difficulties
of finding some real snippets of information in this increasingly
propagandistic and bombastic
media soup we are supposed to happily slurp. In order to (try to)
understand what is really happening
use at the moment either [printed
web media: a combination of "Le Monde Diplomatique",
the "Neue Zürcher Zeitung",
"The Economist", "Die Zeit" (this last weekly
is unfortunately getting less and less useful)
plus some snippets of real
information I am able to find on the web. But you should
never forget that
each one of these sources of information has his own dangerous bias and his owners'
(as opposed to yours)
interests to defend.
In the Television
landscape things are much worser. My kids have never seen
anything else than their (wide) collection of cartoon and animal wildlife
videotapes on TV. They are only now beginning to
realize that there is a 'broadcasted TV' as well, out there. Of course they will,
soon enough, watch TV-channels like their friends do,
yet I hope that
the long time spent with films of accettable quality
will give them some
advantage in judging and choosing what they intend to
Time will tell... maybe our
approach is completely wrong: centuries ago the Mongols set their kid
on a horse and then prodded this
until the kid learned to ride (or knocked his head on the ground :-) Maybe to-day parents SHOULD put
their kids early in the morning in front of the awful crap (and kid-targeted
all TV channels spit out without interruptions. And then leave them there, the longest the
better. Maybe thattaway they will survive perfectly in the zombies' society we live in. But
I doubt it and I simply cannot perform such a crime.
So it will not be difficult for me to join the no-TV week promoted by
and [antipub.net], but
at times I wonder if reversers should not rather do the contrary
and WATCH some tv for a whole week: it would be instructive to say the least.
I am really convinced that Goebbels would be proud of the techniques used
nowadays to present what they ironically call 'information' on TV. Maybe we should watch all kind of
TV's 'offerings' more often
for our social reversing purposes.
a reverser there is much to learn -for instance-
incredible 'afternoon sitcoms' with paid laughers that 'underline' the 'puns' from
'outside the camera' (a pavlovian technique if I ever saw one). 'Prime rate' emissions
are also great fun, with their fantastically
petty philosophies: most sitcoms struggle hard to reach the cultural level of a meeting
of Barbie dolls. Finally, if you want a quick glimpse of the ultrasqualor,
you should take the time to watch TV in the morning, say around
11.00 ~ 11.30. Be warned! That will leave you with some brain-scars but will deliver mighty reversing
But this we should not do during the
turn-off week, eh!
From 22 to 28 April we are not going to watch any TV at all :-P
~S~ fravia+, 22 march 2000, updated
13 March 2001
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