7 Life Misconceptions Portrayed in Popular Television Advertisements

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“That feeling of freedom, open highways of possibilities, has kind of been lost to materialism and marketing.” – Sheryl Crow

Since becoming minimalist, I watch far less television. I have learned that television rarely brings any significant value into my life. Worse than that, it often distracts me the very things that do. But, I am not entirely opposed to using television as a means for entertainment/relaxation on a limited scale.

And, just to be fair, I do appreciate entertainment as much as the next guy and often find enjoyment in sporting events and clever advertisements. But as somebody who has developed great frustration over the consumer-driven culture that we live in, I observe marketing with a skeptical eye. I often seek to determine the underlying promise of any advertisement and uncover what else, other than the product itself, marketers are trying to sell me.

Far too often, I discover their underlying message promotes foolish misconceptions about life. We would be wise to recognize and intentionally reject each of them. Consider just a few misconceptions on display in our most popular television advertisements.

7 Life Misconceptions Portrayed in Popular Television Advertisements

1. Happiness is for sale.

Marketers often seek to convince us their products will increase our happiness. From soda and alcohol to fashion and automobiles, happiness is offered to us in our very next purchase. I was surprised at the level of boldness some products used in promoting this misconception. Coca-Cola (“Open happiness”) and Volkswagen (“Get in. Get happy.”) stand out significantly. The truth of life is that happiness cannot be purchased no matter how hard we search for it in material possessions. And advertisers do a great disservice to their audience by promising it in temporal packages.

2. Self-confidence can be quickly found in the right purchase.

Every person desires to be comfortable in their skin and self-confident in their abilities. We have an ingrained desire to accomplish, succeed, and make something of our lives. But many of us are held back by a lack of self-confidence. Thus, we desire any quick advantage to find it. This again is a common theme among marketers and many will offer it to us in exchange for our dollars. Both Audi and Speed Stick (among others) employ it. But putting your confidence in an automobile or stick of deodorant is not the same as finding it in yourself. Instead, focus on your strengths, celebrate your uniqueness, and learn from past failures rather than dwelling on them.

3. Youth culture represents the pinnacle of life’s seasons.

Advertisers idolize youth culture and our society rewards them for it. For example, watch this Taco Bell commercial. Apparently, the “youth” season of life is to be among the most praised, promoted, and desired. And while I often look back on my college years with fond memories, I have come to the conclusion there are far greater things to accomplish in life than rejecting authority and staying up late. I have learned the value of family, service, contribution, mentoring, and improving the lives of those in community around me. Maturity and wisdom have taken root. And the only reason I’d want to relive my youth is to do it all differently.

4. Sex is the ultimate goal.

Sex is best enjoyed and brings the greatest fulfillment in a committed relationship. For marketers to esteem it in any other light is painful for me to watch—especially with two young children in my home. My hope is that both of them—and society—will grow to appreciate all the beauty and value and perspective that women bring into our world. Marketers that seek to sell their products using women as objects of sex to be conquered are degrading to both males and females. I am not expecting the trend to end anytime soon, but Axe Body Spray, Fiat, and GoDaddy stand out as some of the worst offenders.

5. To watch television is to experience life.

Network television advertisements often use this misconception when promoting their television shows (to be fair, movie studios do the same). In their marketing, to watch their show is to experience life at its fullest. They appear to offer the very best thing you can possibly choose to do with your next 30/60 minutes. Coupled with the subtle lie that everyone else is watching (#1 Show / #1 Network / #1 Movie), this becomes a motivating sell. We begin to believe that if everyone else is spending their evening watching… I must really be missing out. But you are not missing out. Life is not meant to be observed. Life is meant to be lived.

6. Adventure/Respect is discovered in the right automobile.

The automobile industry doesn’t sell just cars anymore, it sells respect, confidence (see above), and adventure. After all, with most cars nowadays driving well past 100,000+ miles, marketers must sell us something different than a simple mode of transportation. Some will seek to convince us their vehicle is good for the environment… some will promise us respect and envy… others will promise us adventure. But they are all wrong. A certain model/style of vehicle will not bring the promised results. It will get you from Point A to Point B. And there are far greater places to earn respect and find adventure than a car dealership.

7. A website will solve your life problems.

Cars.com promises to make buying a car simple and easy. GoDaddy.co promises wealth and luxury. They are both over exaggerating. Websites offer information and inspiration, but they do not solve your problems. They will not accomplish the truly important things in life for you. Hard work, dedication, discipline, and focus result in the type of life change many of us desire. Too often, websites and the over-delivery of information only cause us to postpone the hard work necessary to secure lasting change in our lives. Don’t look for a website to solve your problems. Look for them to provide inspiration. But then, put the computer away, and get to work doing something about it.

Image: AP/PepsiCo

Joshua Becker

About Joshua Becker

Writer. Inspiring others to live more by owning less.
Bestselling author of Simplify & Clutterfree with Kids.

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Comments

  1. says

    Because I rise at 4AM, I normally go to bed NLT 8PM. When I hit the sack, the game was on the verge of a blow out; the final score suggests a worthy comeback by San Francisco and a hard-earned win for Baltimore. Congratulations to both teams. As far as the advertisements… looks like I didn’t miss much. I am certain I got more out of the 15 minutes I read before turning the light off than I would have being barraged by inane marketing. By the way, I recommend Mark Helprin’s latest offering “In Sunlight and In Shadow.” Goodnight, Gracie.

  2. says

    I’ve not wathced television in quite some time. I use Netflix to watch a few shows each week – no ads involved. I watched some of the Superbowl but found it very hard to endure the ads and even the pop-culture attitude surrounding the entire event. As your article points out – you’re not going to find happiness through the consumer driven culture pushed by television.

    Dan @ ZenPresence

  3. ann a says

    Some of the best parenting advice I’ve heard in regard to watching tv with your kids is to talk back to the commercials. “Are you trying to tell me wearing that deodorant will automatically cause…” My childhood pastor taught us this trick in a sermon series on sex. He raised two great adults.

    • joshua becker says

      I love this comment Ann. It’s such an easy and practical way to teach your child to take a discerning eye towards advertising. Thanks for offering it.

    • Shannon B. says

      We do this too! And then we include the kids by saying something like “Can you guys believe this? They’re trying to say that you’re cool if you have their car. Is that what makes a person cool?” They know the answer to that by common sense if not from my tone and I get a chorus of emphatic no’s. Then I tell them they’re wise to recognize it and not let themselves be fooled. They own that compliment, they carry it with them and I hear them repeat it or ask each other similar challenges at other times. We do it when we walk by magazine stands and drive by billboards too!

  4. says

    wow…

    I, too, am an early riser and early to bed, so even though it was possible to watch online, I just passed. I don’t have or watch television so I suppose I am like tVM and Dan Garner. and, like ann a, I too have a habit of talking back to commercials. [during tennis that I enJOY watching online EXCEPT when they are on one of the main networks and the same commercial is played over and over and back to back during the “breaks”]

    So Now that I find myself in good company, I just want to say, thank you, Joshua, for the effort to A] sit through those commercials in the first place and 2] sharing them in such a thoughtfully provocative way.

    Normally I would just have given up at the Coke commercial, but your “spin” on each really kept my attention. I won’t say I enJOYed them, and GoDaddy’s first one I most especially did NOT.

    I usually just stay quiet about this stuff. I am NOT much for debating or smashing, but you have opened me up to a whole other aspect of Responsibility. I still feel like I need a long hot shower and to brush my teeth a few dozen times, but I am grateful for YOU taking the time to share this from your perspective.

    Thanks. Really. Thank YOU so Very Much!!

  5. says

    Josh, again, another excellent post. I could rant and rave about last night’s commercials, but you pretty much summed it up. Additionally, I’m not sure why someone as talented as Beyonce needs to be half dressed to perform, but I guess I must just be a bit old fashioned (at the age of 41).

  6. says

    Good aim with that hammer, Josh; the nail is well and truly hit. I found almost all the ads distasteful, rather than humorous and clever, as in past years. GoDaddy was just gross, and I was heartened by how many friends and family agreed.

    The Budweiser ad told a beautiful, appealing, heartfelt story. It stole the show on many levels, and for good reason. I may not be a fan of their product, but I am a fan of their Clydesdale series of commercials.

  7. Marty Greer says

    Wow that is so cynical!
    I saw entirely different messages.
    I saw in Budweiser – the human animal bond.
    I saw in Dodge not only the human animal bond but a way to highlight the importance of farmers in our lives. Without them, there would be no survival in the way we can today. None of us can grow all of our own food.
    Life is all in what lens you peer at it through.

    • joshua becker says

      Thanks for the comment Marty. As I mentioned in the post, I thought the M&M’s commercial was both clever and entertaining. And the Dodge advertisement was my favorite of them all. Thanks for pointing out some of your favorites as well.

      • CK says

        I liked the Dodge commercial the most, too. I produce television commercials for a living, though not even close to the scale of a Superbowl ad. I find the most effective ads don’t have to be flashy, they can be straightforward, honest and sincere. Honesty in advertising? No kidding. I think that’s why we liked it so much.

    • says

      There’s truth in your observations, Marty. I’d like to think that most people viewing commercials see them in the same way. However, knowing what I know about human behavior and about advertising and marketing techniques, I doubt that is the case. That’s why there are more of the “bad” commercials on TV than the more wholesome ones. Advertisers in general market to a different client than you. For myself, I can’t say that I see the “good” messages as often as the “bad” ones, but I can say that I find very few commercials worth the time to watch them.

  8. says

    I find that sports in general have a very base message to give. As long as you have money, you will have success. The sports idols are treated like gods, because we think they have everything. That isn’t so prevalent in Canada, as much as it is in the United States. We are drowning in reality TV shows and sports, so we do not have the time to think about the important questions in life. It is like the movie, Wall-e, or Idiosyncracy. You are too busy watching TV to actually notice that your planet is falling apart around you. But everything will be alright – just watch more TV, and it will solve all your problems, or at least put them on the backburner so you don’t have to worry about them. Cynical, yes. But so sadly true.

  9. Kelly Tribble says

    I remember this Sprite ad in the 1990s. It parodied the whole “drink this and you’ll be awesome” idea: http://youtu.be/Eoj5ABE2pUs It was pretty funny because it made it all step back and remember that these ads are just ads… and the onscreen characters just actors.

    But, I struggle with simplicity every day. I fail every day. And I attempt to woo my girl every day into continuing to love me AND stop loving her stuff. We’ll see how it goes.

  10. says

    Great points Joshua. Marketers would have society believe that happiness can be bought in increments and to have you just need to buy ONE more thing. Until that one more thing breaks/goes out of style. The wool has been pulled over everyone’s eyes for too long! Good post to bring these thoughts some light.

  11. says

    This year’s Clydesdale ad reminded me of all the dedicated folks who raise, socialize and love puppies only to send them on to be seeing eye dogs.
    Seeing Ram’s “And God Made the Farmer” and Jeep’s “We Are a Nation That is Whole Again” made having the TV on worthwhile.

  12. anonymous says

    The fact that you even watched the Super Bowl in the first place has me suspect. That game epitomizes all that is materialistic in the complete universe. It is a glorification of the obscene and the absurd.

    And you even sponsored parties as part of the idolization of your insanity!

    I think YOU are #1 in life’s misconceptions portrayed. Hypocrite indeed.

    • everlearning says

      I have been thinking about this comment since it was posted on 2/4. I have no intention of bashing Joshua, and while I think this post was simply mean and nasty, somewhere in there I found a tiny particle of truth. I hope to be more gentle in expressing my feelings on this. I, too was surprised when I saw this post from Joshua about the Super Bowl and the ads. Somehow in my mind’s eye of Joshua’s life, I imagined that he would have no part of the whole Super Bowl thing. That’s my problem, not his. One of the things that I have appreciated so much about Joshua’s Becoming Minimalist site is that he never tells us HOW to minimize or WHAT to minimize or that we have to be just like him; he simply encourages us to think, to be open to new ideas and change, and to minimize in our own way. And he never condemns those who don’t live like he does.

      I am a female in my early 50s and have been involved in sports in some way all my life. I played sports competitively through college, have remained active in sports since then and lead a very active life. My husband of 30 years was also an athlete through college and still remains very active and loves sports. Our four children have all been involved in sports (some more than others). That being said, “sports”, as I recall from my youth, is a very different animal than it is today. I love the competition. I love what the best of playing a sport and being on a team can do for an individual. But increasingly, I find myself in a love/hate relationship with sports. It seems it’s taken on a life of its own, and spectators are partly to blame. Its become so much about money and power. And while I cringe at quoting “anonymous”, to me (and others) sports at all levels seems to have an element that “epitomizes all that is materialistic” and “is a glorification of the obscene and the absurd”. (Wow, that was tough!) I want to watch a good football game/basketball game/golf tournament/tennis match, etc. But I also know what’s driving these things to their current level. Money, power, greed, selfishness, and yes, materialism. We buy bigger and bigger and more expensive TVs so we can get the “be there” effect while watching. We spend huge amounts of money to attend these events. (And we are just coming out of the Great Recession??? The money spent for these things is something I cannot even comprehend.) We put up with commercials that are mostly trash. We pay money for more TV channels so that we can watch more sports. Most arenas and stadiums are named after a company/advertiser, and you can hardly watch a game on TV or at the actual event without being bombarded with advertisements all over the arena or stadium – on the scorers table, on the scoreboard, on the seats, printed on the fields or the courts. Sex is prevalent from the cheerleaders’ outfits and movements (are they really still cheerleaders these days?), the dancers, the halftime shows, the commercials. On and on it goes, worse and worse every year, and we still watch, we still participate, we still pay for it, we still give money to our favorite teams, we still pay for all the sports paraphernalia, we still put up with it. Most of us gasp when we hear what it costs to air a commercial during the Super Bowl. But still, we put up with it.

      My husband and I have always discussed commercials with our kids (often even turning off the TV during the discussion, despite the “Aww, come on!” remarks). But it has been the only way we could justify watching it, and we have had some really great discussions with our kids. They have also learned a lot about advertising and toxic messages. But is that enough? I don’t know. I also know I don’t have the answers to all this. But my husband and I have seriously discussed finding a cable company that can give us fewer channels (even though we have the smallest package possible through our current supplier). For decades our TV has not been turned on during the week (M-Th), we’ve discussed getting rid of the TV (but we enjoy borrowing a movie from the library for an occasional family movie night), we’re watching less and less sports and we haven’t watched any sitcoms, dramas, or news shows in many years. But none of this makes us heroes. I struggle for answers. I struggle with sports. I struggle with advertising. I struggle with mass media in general. But the struggle – asking the tough questions – helps me learn and grow and hopefully change for the better. For me, that’s what this site is all about. Thank you, Joshua!

      • everlearning says

        Sorry to add on to that very long post …. but, lest we forget, we also put up with the ever-increasing scandals in sports (think Penn State, Ohio State, concussion in football…..)!

  13. Banjo Steve says

    Like you, I had some quite negative reactions to many of the commercials, though several were just fine. However, the unrealistic view of the world that some ads propagandize so well, I feel, is one of the big reasons that our culture/country, as wealthy as it is, is full of so many unhappy people who feel they don’t have “enough” or feel left out of all those good things that “should” be available to them. What a shame.

  14. Banjo Steve says

    Wow! I just read the “Anonymous” comment above mine. To me, hypocrisy is writing such a judgmental comment without owning up to who you are. Another sad thing to witness. Be well.

  15. Sheila says

    Good post. I agree. The Go Daddy commercials are always obscene. I was watching the Taco Bell commercial (the old people “partying”) with my 16 year-old son and we both commented about how dumb it was. So it’s fun to go to nightclubs, drink, and get tattoos? That’s not what life is all about, and I’m glad the values taught in our church teach us otherwise.

  16. Annie says

    My mom used to watch TV with us and often commented on commercials and the programs too. She taught us to watch with a critical eye and to choose carefully what we spent our time watching. I watch very little TV nowadays because most of it is garbage that sends the wrong message about how people should treat one another, (don’t even get me started on the networks aimed at women such as Oxygen, ARGH!!!), and most commercials are just as ridiculous.
    My husband and I have become so frustrated with most programming that we have begun the process of getting rid of our cable service and will have only the free basic network channels, which is fine for our needs. We mainly watch the news and occasionally things on PBS. We resent paying for “junk” channels we never watch. Instead we will be able to pick and choose from Netflix disc and on-demand service, and I’ll finally get to read all of the books I’ve been meaning to get to.

  17. Inkdig says

    I don’t know if this was so much in evidence in the Super Bowl ads, but I’ve been noticing more and more companies pushing the “Activism Through Consumerism” tactic in their advertising.

    The basic gist is that to own or use a company’s product is to be part of a political movement. It’s a more sophisticated version of the old “Cool People Use This” angle. If you use these products, you will not only be *like* the people you admire: you will effectively be making a political statement, taking a stand against injustice, earning membership in The Struggle. With so many genuine protests in the news lately, a lot of companies apparently saw an opportunity to capitalize on the image of grassroots activism — young people taking a stand for a common goal. Of course, the inherent lie is that people can make a difference by buying something, and that taking a stand is as simple as charging your credit card; in reality, nothing will change unless people get off the couch and get involved.

    I (thankfully) can’t remember the products involved, but keep an eye out, and you’ll spot them everywhere.

    • Annie says

      I’ve noticed that as well. The most obvious are all of the companies who “pinkify” their products and push them as a way to donate to breast cancer research during October. As a relative of someone who died from breast cancer, the way these companies try to increase sales by pinkifying their products really bugs me. People are better off donating directly, and it’s wise to check out the charity on such sites as Charity Navigator first so you know how much of your donation will go towards the administration running the charity.

    • mr. bean says

      what about companies that sell products that are supposedly better for the environment, like reusable cups, but are still encased in excessive packaging to full up the landfills. Or they try to convince you to replace a perfectly good product with one that is made in a way that is better for the environment in some way and just throw the old one on the garbage.

  18. Brenda Allingham says

    Great article Josh! We don’t watch TV because it seems there is so very little of value there and I get tired of constantly having to deprogram myself……I have to do that enough without the influence of “the box.”

    The only change I would make is instead of: “Sex is best enjoyed and brings the greatest fulfillment in a committed relationship”…..Sex is best enjoyed and brings the greatest fulfillment, the way God intended it to be, in a committed marriage relationship between a husband and wife. Yup, I would be that bold.

    • Louise Farnham says

      I hope that noone in the committed marriage wants to follow Jesus (Luke14:26).
      If I may be so bold – keep your religion to yourself.

      • Janet says

        There’s no reason to attack someone for something that you haven’t studied enough to understand. That passage merely means that followers of Jesus have to be able to reject everything that prohibits their ability to follow His teachings.

        • joshua becker says

          Thanks for the comments everybody. But the rest of your conversation should probably take place elsewhere. This is a post about Super Bowl advertisements.

  19. says

    Great post, Joshua. I agree with all of it–I dread watching the Super Bowl ads and am amazed that so many people will tune in just for the ads alone. I will sheepishly admit that I spent most of my 20’s writing commercials as a copywriter at a major NY ad agency, but I’m glad that I finally came to my senses and quit trying to sell meaningless products. It feels good to have moved on, and feels even better to be writing about making positive, meaningful changes in how to spend time and money, and yes–espousing minimalism and non-commercialism.

  20. says

    Totally hear you on this post, and thanks for it. Watching all the commercials made me sad; through my adult eyes I can put it all in perspective and shrug it off. But for much of the country and, yes, my kids…they continue o be affected and shaped by this stuff. There are some very intelligent people behind the scenes of these commercials who know human behavior very well…we must fight the good fight. Great post!

  21. MelD says

    Anybody here read/reread Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World lately?
    It filled me with fascinated horror when I was a teenager in the late 70s but my most recent reread made it clear that we are, incredibly, not too far off this distopia… I tried to research how come Huxley would realise the future popularity of TV when he wrote it in 1931 (the very first commercial TVs were sold from 1928, I discovered, but the new technology was extremely limited until after WWII) but it doesn’t seem that other people notice this much, at least, I could find no observations. Truly amazing. He was right about the cult of youth and beauty, too, amongst many other things – quite a wake-up call.
    PS when my girls were younger and saw ads, I would remind them that it was just TV and not reality – one time my eldest daughter was delighted when we got a free sample of a product she’d seen advertised but it turned out to taste awful: one cured daughter!
    My youngest miraculously stopped asking for the latest Barbie dolls and toys after we moved to an area that didn’t have cable and so-called “kid-channels” (back in the 90s), so that solved that, too. With only a few national channels with few or no ads and then only videos, we managed to dodge the negative effects pretty well and all the girls have grown up critical. Sadly, the “bigger/better” TV age has now also reached Switzerland.

  22. says

    Great thoughts. I just wrote a blog post about an endangered species that is on few people’s radars—the thinking human. Because thinking leads to change and change moves people away from self-gratification, thinking is avoided. We let the media tell us how to be significant and how to be happy. Our brains are like a time share… we only use them once a year! If you want a competitive advantage in life, give thinking a try. There aren’t many people doing it these days!

  23. says

    Aloha. Great thoughts. Although I’m football fan, I wasn’t able to see all of the commercials but I still watched the game online while I did some cleaning. Your point about “To watch television is to experience life” I felt was spot on. How many times am I in a conversation with a group and they are talking about a TV show and are surprised when I haven’t watched it or even heard of it (I don’t own a TV). Then continue to tell me that I need to catch up with the times. I feel I experience life much more than sitting in front of a television to be entertained by other people’s problems and dramas. Awesome stuff Joshua. Much Mahalo for your insights.

  24. Carolynn says

    As in all of life…you take the good with the bad and chose your path. Living in the heartland I know the importance and sacrifice of life of a farm. I sooooo loved the Dodge and the Budwiser commercials…I have watched them a few more times and they still bring and tear to my eye and also make me smile. I don’t even remember the rest…

    • says

      I totally agree with you. I didn’t see it but my family back in Hawaii told me about it so I looked it up. It made me want to get my own dodge and head home to the islands and get back to working on the land. I’m proud to say my family is a dodge ram family.

  25. says

    Fantastic post Josh! I will admit, I laughed at the nursing home commercial! :) You make many valid points about how our culture in the US has become about instant gratification and entitlement.

    Even though many of the ads were as you mentioned, I felt that the “God Made a Farmer” & The Budweiser Horse commercials were very touching. They were memorable commercials because they pulled at the heart. As Amy says, yay for hard work & integrity!

    Thank you for sharing your thoughts!

  26. says

    Love this post! I stopped watching TV years ago and it is amazing how much I am offended by commercials when I do see one now.

    I especially like your comments about youth. I, too, have fond memories from my past, but like you I would only relive it for a chance to do everything differently.

  27. says

    Hi,
    I really enjoyed this post. I am also not a tv-watcher, but we went over to my MIL’s to watch the game with the family. Big mistake to think even watching a little bit of the game would be appropriate for my son. I found most of the commercials to be in bad taste. Don’t even get me started on the half time show, I wanted to cover my son’s eyes. But, then again, what did I expect? Anway, I really enjoyed your post and your thoughts echo my sentiments exactly.

    Kate

  28. Janet says

    Great observations, Joshua, but I can’t help but think that we have the TV that we want and deserve.

    My work brings me in contact with dozens of elementary school aged children. The majority of students have learned the lessons of materialism and overconsumption all too well – I see it start in earnest in the second grade. And these same 7 year olds also know what the TV show “Cheaters” is all about. Yet every parent I speak to insists that their child/children are not allowed to….(fill in the blank)…like their neighbors’ children are. Well, somebody has to be allowing this listening and viewing because I see the results.

    I realize that I am probably in the “extremist” minority that thinks it is a sign of a much larger disorder in our society when a family cannot watch a football game without being embarrassed in front of each other – and when the half-time show is reminiscent of stage shows that used to warrant a raid from the local police. We do have the power to put an end to this if we want. We don’t have to watch. Our children would be the better for it. How many of us are willing to make the sacrifice?

  29. says

    Great insights Joshua. I normally love the “entertainment” factor when it comes to Super Bowl ads, but there were definitely some this year that made me uncomfortable, especially with my two little boys in the room (can you say blech on GoDaddy?!) I did enjoy the Budweiser horse commercial tho ;)

  30. bobby batson says

    Maybe I am cynical but the Budweiser and Ram ads bothered me as much as the rest. They are trying to sell you something just like all the others – trying to do so with sappy content and/or content that pretends their intention is something else (e.g. they really care about farmers!) is no less distasteful to me.

    While I tend to despise the GoDaddy ads generally speaking, I did like the one early in the game about all these folks with the same idea and saying the same thing, but only the one guy who bought the GoDaddy website got rich. Tongue and cheek – basically comedy. I can handle that.

  31. says

    Ha! Yes, those GoDaddy commericials are terrible. I’m a dude and I watch them and think they’re terrible. I guess sex sells, which I’m tired of hearing, it gets boring after awhile on all the commericals all the time. How about telling me what your product does instead?

  32. Patrick says

    So a website is saying that it can solve my life problems, and one of its points is that a website can’t solve your life problems. Interesting.

    This is like that deal where somebody says “I only tell lies.”

  33. Ken Stucky says

    A college prof challenged me and my wife to go the first 365 days of our marriage without TV. We are not 24+ years and counting. When asked why, I say “we don’t watch TV for the same reason we don’t let our daughters drink out of the toilet”. Our entertainment budget goes to travel. We have been to amazing places first hand.

  34. says

    I like TV. I learn things on mythbusters and see great things on National Geographic. I laugh at silly religious people on Snake Salvation. I get to lose myself in entertainment in movies.
    I just don’t watch commercials. By using the DVR, I don’t have to. By using Netflix I can avoid them all together. I can also avoid the disappointment of a show getting cancelled. I’m about to start burn notice and breaking bad.

  35. says

    I grew up in Europe and we rented a TV for 6 weeks over the Summer starting when I was 9 years old. The TV had programs from 6 pm to midnight.

    When I had my daughter I got rid of the TV for 8 years.

    TV is a non-necessity.

    A child is much better off without one, especially in their first 8 years of life, when most of their development is occurring.

    This blog addresses these essentials of life…
    http://papagreenbean.blogspot.com/

  36. says

    I stopped watching television shows in 2006, and it was one of the most liberating decisions I ever made. I rarely feel that I’m missing anything. When I do hear about a critically acclaimed program, I know I can rent or buy it sometime when I will have time to watch it (which never seems to happen). My life is so rich and busy with my friendships, my work, my painting, my dancing, my traveling, etc. There is never enough time to do all that my heart desires, let alone add television to the mix! In fact, I find the sound of the advertisements physically unbearable–the tone, the decibel level, the content, and the images. They just grate on me.

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    about my site not operating cortrectly in Explorer but looks
    great in Chrome. Do you have any tips to help fix this problem?

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