SHCC WYSIWYG Article from February 2020

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This article was written by Don VanSyckel, the club president, as a part of "The President's Pen".  This article appeared in the February 2020 WYSIWYG newsletter.

Cutting the Cord part 3

by Don VanSyckel

Cutting the cord has been mentioned several times at SHCC meetings. Well I've cut the cord. Cutting the cord refers to getting rid of cable TV. Of course you might still have cable internet or some other type internet service so you still have a cord of sorts. We had basic internet and basic TV programming. I already had three High Definition (HD) antennas in a drawer and three Roku's. I called WOW to cancel TV programming and increase internet speed. I was offered 30 Mb which I agreed to. As the WOW representative was starting to enter the orders my eyes caught sight of a Comcast mailer advertisement. I commented that I had been meaning to call for a while since I kept getting Comcast ads in the mail. To my surprise the response was well in that case WOW offered 100 Mb internet service for less than the previous amount.

At this point I also started to get DVDs from the Sterling Heights Public Library. Not movies as much as TV series. I tend to watch mysteries and action so I would start with the first season of a series and work my way through to the last season. The SHPL is in a library coop and any item they didn't have another library in the coop did. Getting an item from another library takes a few days so a little planning is a good thing. It's amazing to me how many episodes of shows I used to watch on network TV I had missed even with Summer reruns or just plain forgot. It became apparent to me that I enjoy watching the series on DVD more than on TV for two reasons. First, obviously you can pause the DVD and not miss anything. The second reason is while the series I watch are not considered continuous stories like soap operas and a few TV drama series are, some nuances in the show and character development are more meaningful when you have viewed the previous episodes.

Then over Christmas Pluto streaming service offered 50 - 60 Christmas movies for free. Some I'd seen and I watched the ones I hadn't seen. I've also watch a couple movies on Pluto and VuDu. I haven't paid any money for any content. OK I've been submitted to a few commercials as a form of payment but, hey, nothing in life is really free.

With the free streaming services I've tried you can't search for a particular movie or series. You choose from what they offer. Most services change their selections or part of their selections monthly. They will group movies by genre and I can't believe how many genre's they have come up with. The selections are generally not recent. Having said that, I'm surprise how many movies are offered that sound interesting to me that I haven't seen. I believe at the rate I'm going it'll be five to ten years before I exhaust the free stuff. Of course by then there will be another five to ten years worth of offering added to the mix so I might never run out.

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