You may have heard stories about people cutting the cords in the sense of cable television.
You might not know anyone who’s done this. Now you do.
Cutting the cord is possibly the best thing I’ve done for myself in the last decade. Before I decided cable TV was not for me, I would come home from work, plop down on the couch, and watch whatever was on.
I didn’t ever have anything in particular to watch. Sure, I had certain shows that I wanted to watch, but as a new professional journalist, many times I was out covering a meeting and missed whatever programming I enjoyed.
When I did finally get home, it was hours of reruns of the Big Bang Theory or something similar. I love that show, but I’ve seen nearly every episode, so I really didn’t need to keep watching it.
We were a Neilsen family at the time. You know, the company that tracks what people are watching. Ever wonder how they do this? Well, they select various families in specific regions, strap a big black box to the back of their TV and track what they watch and when.
I told the guy when he asked us to sign up that it would be mostly PBS and the History Channel. Boring and unexpected for a couple in their early 20s. But it didn’t matter.
Plus, we got paid ever few months to be a part of the study — double because we were younger. Having just graduated from college, any form of compensation was a win for me.
Grant and I began to notice we were wasting a bunch of time watching stuff we weren’t necessarily interested in. Neither of us are into in sports, either, so we didn’t have that to keep us tied to cable.
Once the Neilsen study was over, we were done with cable. I often get questions like, “How do you get the news?” or “How do you keep yourself occupied?” (Because TV is the only thing to occupy your time with? But that’s another matter), or “What if there’s a show you want to watch?”
Really, the simple answer is, “The Internet.” I get most of my news from Twitter — it helps that I work in the news, too. If I feel like watching something, I will generally watch it on YouTube, Netflix or Hulu. The latter actually has current programming on it, albeit a day later, but who cares?
If there is a show I want to watch, I wait. I’m a patient person, and I know my life won’t necessarily be better by watching a television show. Although, I’m counting down to when HBO offers their channel a la carte online. I would very much like to watch “Girls,” “Veep,” “The Newsroom” and “Game of Thrones.”
Truthfully, the future is in cord cutting. More and more people look to get rid of their expensive cable bills, and I will be the first to say my life is much better because of it. I pay $7.99 a month for Hulu Plus and the same for Netflix streaming. I can choose between using my husband’s Xbox to stream it onto the TV, or use our Chromecast.
If I didn’t have either of these, I could hook my computer up through my TV’s HDMI port and watch it that way.
Seriously, the possibilities are virtually endless.
So join me in the cord-cutting revolution! You’ll find more time to do things that are more enjoyable, and you won’t be tied to your couch at a specific time on a certain night.
And the major plus? You won’t have that crazy cable bill to worry about.