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Oct 9, 2016

SO MUCH CONTENT, SO LITTLE TIME - #FirstWorldProblems

We are living in a wonderful time where there is so much content available, it's hard to keep up.  If you work in the Entertainment Industry, or even if you're just a cinephile who likes to watch as much as humanly possible, it has become nearly impossible to see even a large percentage of all that is out there for viewing.  With so many streaming services, new movies in theaters, cable TV (although many are opting out on this one, and the number continues to grow) as well as Disc purchases (another number that is falling), Film Festivals...the list goes on, keeping up with content has become almost work.  Needless to say this is a First World Problem indeed.  Many people worry about important things like where their next meal is coming from, looking for work or keeping a roof over their head.  Those are real problems, this one is not.

I used to pride myself on at least sampling every TV show and seeing as many movies as possible (on the big screen of course), but now with 3 streaming subscriptions, a full DVR, and the purchase of at least 2-3 discs a week (some of them box sets) not to mention books, video games and a full-time job that often demands overtime, I almost find myself panicking with the amount of content I keep piling up and intending to watch.  It became so overwhelming at one point I had to finally sit down and pull some shows of my list just so I could watch more films than TV (I have always prioritized cinema over Television), and keep up with what I felt was important not only for my industry passion, but my professional involvement as well.

A TV business podcast I listen too entitled "The Spin-off", an offshoot of "The Business" on KCRW (both must listens) frequently delves into the issue of this being the era of Peak TV a phrase coined by FX Network Chief John Landgraf, lamenting how thanks to weekly offerings of full shows from Netflix and other services, the glut of TV is out of control.  The show announced that at the beginning of 2016, there were 409 scripted series in some sort of production.  If critics who spend all their time watching (and I'm including movie critics as well) can't keep up, it becomes even tougher for those of us whose days aren't all about watching and critiquing content.

So what is the point of this post you may ask?  Frankly, I'm not sure myself.  It is almost a way of me airing my frustration at not being able to watch everything that I want, a problem that I'm not too upset at having.  I am sure others are in the same boat, and what it could mean is a further splintering of audiences as we become more and more curators of our own entertainment experience rather than letting others do it as we have in the past.