Cablevision sez: People don't know jack about HDTV so let's treat them like complete idiots


Rather than go to bed at a respectable hour, I was awake well into the night just a few hours ago, scrolling through my many channels of utter garbage. Then I landed on some “here’s what this guy has to say” testimonial about HDTV. Judging by this infomercial—one for Cablevision’s iO, which is odd since I’m a wonderfully happy Time Warner subscriber—consumers must have no idea what HDTV is. Like, it was embarrassing.

The infomercial had these two hosts, no doubt chosen for their camera-friendliness, whose name I couldn’t remember if threatened. Then there was this smarmy installer guy who sorta reminded me of what I imagine PC Magazine’s office to look like: young but not really, knowledgeable about something you couldn’t talk about casually in a party setting. And so on.

But to the point: the “not an actor” folks on screen who praised “HaitchDee,” and by extension iO, seemed to have no idea what HDTV. One guy was like, “I bought the TV and plugged in the coax cable and thought, ‘Wow, HD is great.'” Then we cut to smarmy installer guy who’s all, “You need to use these special cables to get the best in iO picture and sound.” No, not HDMI, but component. Clever, iO, mask the fact that the converter boxes you rent don’t support HDMI by calling component the bestest in the world.

So there I watched, more annoyed than anything else, as Cablevision treated potential customers as blithering idiots: “HDTV means better picture and sound—why don’t you make yourself a hot dog? You’ve earned it, mister.”

Yes, let’s all get hot dogs and revel in our non-education, spending our money all willy-nilly.

iO HD [Cablevision]