Friday, February 18, 2005

Best Program to Tivo

You may recall my recommendation that you purchase a DVR (digital video recorder) to “tivo” your favorite programs. (Ed. Note: Tivo is a service providing a DVR and a search function for programs similar to the ones you like. You don’t need this service. Your cable or dish provider will provide you with the hardware, which you can purchase outright rather than rent, and you can program your own favorites, thereby avoiding a service which watches what you watch. Although Tivo is a tradename, tivo, with a small “t” has become a verb, and, yes, I’m guessing that eventually they will lose the tradename to popular usage. Ah, the price of being first.).

My favorite program to tivo is the “Imus in the Morning” show, 3 hours daily at 6:00 am to 9:00 am EST. Don Imus is a craggy old cokehead from the 60’s who delights with his blunt criticism and colorful language. MSNBC has put this radio show on TV and it is unique because of his connections to all of the top news people, who call in with their honest insights into today’s news.

However, there are two problems: there are way too many ads, promos, intros, and time- wasting graphics, and it is on in Denver from 4:00 am to 7:00 am. Both make it an ideal candidate for tivoing.

During a recent show, I kept track of how many times I pressed the 30-sec skip button on my remote – 180 skipped segments in one show. In other words, I was able to watch the actual content in 1 ½ hours and skip the 1 ½ hours of junk. This must be the most advertised show on television, as the commercial breaks often contain 12 30-sec spots. Tivoing makes it worthwhile, and skipping the ads adds an additional pleasure.

Note to the Iman: IMHO, the new set is horrible, not because it makes you look like a space cadet in your bumper-car pod, but because all of the other MSNBC news shows are shot in the same studio, albeit from different positions, and your pod looks like it is temporarily pushed into place each morning. Your cowboy hat helps to verify your identity, but nothing like your old radio studio, cramped and polluted, with you and the boys yucking it up.

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