Thursday, February 16, 2012

No human eyeballs

I believe I am quite accommodating with animals. My house, for one, is a zoo; and today I had to be peer pressured into taking on the staff project of clearing invasive water snails from a local canal over the project to remove invasive tree species from a local secondary forest. Yes, I know both projects will involve killing living things, but snails are a step up from plants. I happen to be more biased towards self-animated lifeforms, that's me. Oh, well, escargot steamed in garlic and butter is nice, too.

But I wouldn't go so far as to anthropomorphize animals. Dressing Q-tip and Pebbles up in cute t-shirts for photos is one thing, but DogTV? A "24/7 digital TV channel with programing scientifically developed to provide the right company for dogs when left alone" (quoted from website) is irrational, to say the least.

I can't even begin to think of a business model that would support such an enterprise. No human eyeballs means no ad revenue, period. The dog, smart as it may be, isn't likely to pick up the phone and dial for a nifty chew-toy. Besides, it's only a lucky few dogs who can randomly punch the numbers on a phone keypad and ring up a valid credit card number.

Financing will have to be done by subscription only. But how many dog owners could be gullible enough to pay US$4.99 a month, to keep the TV on all day for Poochie?

Anyway, I was curious as to what Q-tip would make of DogTV. I recorded a sample video from the website and set it to play on loop. I put Q-tip on the couch, effectively immobilizing her 'cos she won't jump down. While she was stuck there, I hid behind a room divider where I could keep an eye on my poor, unstimulated, captive canine. Did she get hooked to the goggle box in her state of aloneness? Not a chance. Eyeballs everywhere except the TV, even at max volume. Nope. No sale from this household.

In effect, $5 and a significant jump in power bills a month only soothes a salaried dog owner's conscience. The dog couldn't care less, and will probably appreciate peace and quiet more.


elim said...

Sorry!!! >.<""" we could still go do terrarium or kill trees if you like! >.<

Min Seah said...

Pls don't feel bad. Mags explained the snails were indirectly killing other critters in the ecosystem, so I guess we're putting things right in the end. How did she know that there were such concerns, I wonder?

elim said...

Cos I said we were snail killers but Amy said she'd already asked Maggie why we needed to get rid of them. I think she knew people (like me) would ask haha. That's how I realized we were actually doing local longkang fish (whatever they are)and water inhabitants a favour. Also you might be happy to know one of my cubiclemates is interested in adopting some snails hahaha.

elim said...

*oops I initially thought your 'she' referred to amy but on hindsight I realized it was referring to mags. did she know some of us might take them home for home-cooked escargot?

Min Seah said...

hmm... the plot thickens.