Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Digital Disinformation

Something that really bugs me is when so-called "information" doesn't really do its job and inform people. One such example is the following commercial, airing in the Seattle area, about the changeover from analog to digital television broadcasts.

While the beginning couple of seconds are cut off ("There's a change coming to broadcast television, even bigger than the change to color."), the unclear message is the same: On February 17, 2009, YOUR TV WILL STOP WORKING!

Many of us geeks know the details about the HDTV switchover and get what they're trying to say. But I often give messages like this the "my mom" test: Will my mom be able to understand it? This time, I have to answer, "No!"

So to you people trying to inform the masses about the change to HDTV, do us all a favor. Yes, digital TV is better. But you need to let people who aren't technical, and who have older equipment, know in clear, specific language how they can watch this newfangled stuff. Because, technically, their TV won't "stop working."

This has been a public service announcement for the morons that make public service announcements.

1 comment:

Lynn Sinclair said...

You could also use the "Would Lynn understand this" test for announcements like these.