February 24, 2008

Oscars but No Bugs!

Greetings. Regular readers may know that I've been irritated for years by the ever more intrusive bugs (IDs) and promos being injected onto the content of broadcast television and non-premium satellite/cable TV programming. Bugs in particular are usually now present continuously on such channels, except during commercials.

CNN started it all years ago, and since then we've been "treated" to ever larger and more distracting static and animated graphics and video inserts, not just in the lower-right corner where they began, but these days sometimes covering so much of the screen real estate that there doesn't seem to be any room left for the actual program images.

History Channel, for example, just introduced a new bug with a bigger, brighter, and even more opaque capital "H" than before, which looks like it could burn-in on a plasma display in less time than it takes to write about it.

With this clear trend toward Bigger and Badder Bugs, I was pleasantly surprised to notice that ABC (and their L.A. O&O KABC-TV) ran tonight's Academy Awards with only an occasional very brief flash of their ABC HD bug. The rest of the time the screen was mercifully beautiful and pristine. I'd have assumed that the bug generator had crashed if it hadn't been for those short and utterly acceptable bug appearances.

Certainly this isn't an earth-shaking event, but I'd like to know the story behind this decision. An enhanced showcase for HD? Perhaps, though the full time bug was also missing from the SD feed. Arm twisting by AMPAS? To what end?

I'll admit it, I'm mystified by this one, but whatever the reason, I'd like to take this opportunity to thank ABC and the members of the Academy.


Posted by Lauren at February 24, 2008 08:57 PM | Permalink
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