Letter: More TV is worse
We first learnt that it doesn't in the 1970s, with the introduction of multi-screen cinemas. "Oh good," we thought, "six screens to choose from, so we outside London will get the Woody Allen films as well." Try seeing The Castle or The Spanish Prisoner this week outside London - it's Armageddon or Lost in Space at two screens each for the third week running.
The same applies to television. The more channels there are, the more alike the programming, because they all want to make shows that are cheap and massively popular (rather than moderately successful). There are entire nights now in which peak time is wall-to-wall soaps, docu-soaps or formula sitcoms starring ex-soap actors.
And Peter Bazalgette (Podium, 31 August) wants to pretend that it is all somehow very democratic that we "the people" are at long last having our say and should be freed from the "snooty regulation" of regulatory institutions. In support of this he argues that we do not sell enough of our programmes overseas, so they cannot be very good.
Sales are not an indicator of quality, but of cost. Good-quality television costs money to make, unlike the talk show trash which exploits the vulnerability of ordinary people. If we must go down this road, let us at least be honest about it - what drives the programme makers is the need for profit, delivering fragmented audiences to hungry advertisers at minimum cost.
Music Why this music festival is still the place to spot the next big thing
Film review Michael Glatze biopic isn't about a self-hating gay man gone straight
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Is this bridge haunted by the ghost of nu rave?
- 2 The West has it totally wrong on Lee Kuan Yew
- 3 The day I starred in Only Fools and Horses
- 4 Scientists have discovered a simple way to cook rice that dramatically cuts the calories
- 5 Zayn Malik quits One Direction: Hundreds of workers request compassionate leave following band member's exit
Britain's first cinema flickers back to life following £6m refurbishment
A historian gave the most British look of despair when someone screwed up Richard III's birthday at his reburial
Fifty Chefs exhibition: Photographer Katie Wilson documents the injuries sustained on the culinary front line
James May hints Top Gear days are over following Jeremy Clarkson's BBC exit
Fifty Shades of Grey movie shows first sex scene 'after 40 minutes'
Ukip supporters are 55 or older, white and socially conservative, finds British Social Attitudes Report
JK Rowling responds to fan tweeting she 'can't see' Dumbledore being gay
Jeremy Clarkson sacked live: Alan Yentob 'wouldn't rule out' ex Top Gear host's BBC return
David Cameron calls Labour 'hopeless, sneering socialists' while announcing 7-day NHS plans
Revealed: Putin's army of pro-Kremlin bloggers
The West has it totally wrong on Lee Kuan Yew