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Un excellent article du NY Times aujourd’hui sur la place qu’a prise la télé dans la culture américaine – et internationale grâce au rayonnement de la fiction US, ne l’oublions pas. Tout l’article est intéressant mais je reprends ici les extraits les plus parlants.

What do you watch?”

It is no longer a lazy way to redirect a boring conversation. Questions about viewing preferences have become fraught; the topic is as intimate, revealing and potentially off-putting as discussing how much money you make.

It’s a rich television age and a demanding one. The selection is now so plentiful and fragmented and good. And deciding among hundreds of channels, on-demand options, DVR, Internet streaming and iPhones requires so much research, planning and commitment that viewers have become proprietary about their choices. Alliances are formed, and so are antipathies. Snobbery takes root. Preferences turn totemic. The mass audience splintered long ago; now viewers are divided into tribes with their own rituals and rites of passage.

[…]

A favorite show is a tip-off to personality, taste and sophistication the way music was before it became virtually free.

[…]

Before the Internet, iPhones and flash drives, people jousted over who was into the Pixies when they were still a garage band or who could most lengthily argue the merits of Oasis versus Blur. Now, for all but hardcore rock aficionados, one-upmanship is more likely to center around a television series — like metaphysical clues buried in “Lost,” whether the current “Battlestar Galactica” is an affront to the 1978 original (some bloggers sneeringly refer to the current incarnation as Gino, short for “Galactica in name only” ) or who discovered “Flight of the Conchords” when it was a comedy team performing in concerts, not an HBO series.

Television used to be dismissed by elitists as the idiot box, a sea of mediocrity that drowns thought and intelligent debate. Now people who ignore its pools and eddies of excellence do so at their own peril. They are missing out on the main topic of conversation at their own table.

via Denis McGrath.

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