Dammit if advertisers have finally found a way to get me to watch a commercial after all these years.
I rarely watch live television. All of our TV show watching is done through the DVR, so we can eagerly fast-forward through the ads. Just about the only live television I watch is baseball. And when I watch baseball, I'm usually doing something else at the same time like working or surfing the internet. So when the inning is over, I bury my head in my laptop until the game comes back on. Easy, peasy.
Commercials, for a long time now, have had zero effect on my life.
Except for those on the Internet. You know the ones I'm talking about. You see an interesting link that contains an embedded video of something or other and you hurry over to watch it. Except your entertaining video doesn't start for 5 or 10 or even 15 seconds because an ad has to play first. I fucking hate that.
Sure, ads on videos on the Internet have been going on for a long time now. But many (I would say most) of them gave the viewer of opting out of watching it with a little "x" in the upper right hand corner or a link that offered "Proceed directly to video". Something like that. Then they began appearing with a little countdown clock. "Skip advertisement in 10, 9, 8...". More annoying, but at least I could appease my anger god by watching that little countdown clock reach zero.
Now it seems that most of the advertisements don't even offer the viewer the chance to skip it. Immediately or with a countdown clock. AND it seems like the ads are getting longer and longer. The other day I went to a video on MLB.com to see a replay of something that happened in a game. The replay was 22 seconds of digital video. I had to sit through a 30-second advertisement before I could watch that 22-second clip.
I. Wanted. To. Kill. Someone.
I know, I know...I could have just skipped the video altogether and not watched the stupid commercial. But the instantaneous nature of the Internet allows us to go see something exactly when we want to see it. Our brains, my brain at least, isn't prepared for a 30-second advertisement beforehand. I just don't know how to process it. It's a short enough time-span that I'm really not going to get up and do something else. I don't have time to take a piss or grab an ice-cold one from the fridge. I'm not going to jump to another site quickly to check something out in the meantime. I went to that first site at that moment because I wanted the Internet to entertain me IN THAT MOMENT!
So I sit there, blood boiling, and I watch the damned commercial. After all this time, they finally figured me out. I fucking hate that I'm such an easy mark.
Oh, here's something fun. New Era Caps and Major League Baseball are doing this wonderful commercial series with Craig Robinson from The Office and Nick Offerman from Parks and Recreation. It's a North Side/South Side Chicago rivalry thing between the Cubs and White Sox. Great commercials (dammit!). I hadn't seen the newest one yet, but it hit the Web today. So I went over to Funny or Die to watch it. Yup...to watch a commercial.
And I had to sit through a 17-second advertisement before I could watch it.
Welcome to my Hell.