MF Dnes: Czechs Watching a Lot Less TV

glitter_rock.jpg Czech TV watching has dropped by 1/3 since the beginning of the year, reports MF Dnes. The average Czech at the beginning of the year watched TV for an average of 258 minutes a day, but in June this had decreased to 172 minutes a day.

The biggest losses were felt at commercial TV channels, and among groups who are most faithful to the screen: older people and viewers with lower education.

Media experts have come out with a number of explanations for why Czechs would watch so much less TV. Most agree it has to do with the long, hot summer, as well as a summer schedule based almost exclusively on reruns.

The article also had this interesting comparison:
Country: Minutes per day (per viewer)
Macedonia: 325
USA: 270
Poland: 246
Germany: 205
Czech Republic: 203
Sweden: 158
Source: European Key facts 2002 (selected countries)

Let’s face facts. Television in the Czech lands sucks ass. Contempt for the viewer seems to be the order of the day all over the dial. State TV can’t tell a story to save its life, and commercial TV seems to think that viewers are complete imbeciles.

The endemic corruption within these organizations – and in the media buying agencies that feed them – seems to be coming home to roost. It’s a simple rule: put out bad TV and viewers won’t watch, even if the other channels are even worse.

Coming from the U S of A, I like to think I know a think or two about bad TV. As much as we like to make fun of it, even bad TV can at least hold some interest (viz. Jerry Springer or any number of ‘reality’ programs).

But TV here is – to use the excellent Czech phrase – ani slaná, ani mastná neither salty nor greasy. Nobody is willing to stick their necks out enough to come up with something new, or at least interesting.

While we all stroke our beards about Why Czech TV Sucks So Much, here’s a link to some truly godawful TV – in this case, a whacked-out kids’ TV show from the ’70s called Electro Woman and Dyna Girl.

Click on this link to get the incredibly cheezy opening (Quicktime, 1.55megs). More video is here, but check out the astounding clip of the bad guy Glitter Rock. (Link via Metafilter).

I dare the directors of Czech TV to air stuff this bad.

UPDATE Thu Aug 28 14:51 – Man, as soon as I learn how to read and write, this blog’s going to get a lot better. Ever-alert reader Jan Vaněk jr. points out that the correct phrase in Czech is nemastná neslaná.

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