I am a mountain biker, and I like watching mountain bike tournaments; especially downhill racing. It's exhilerating. I only got into mountain biking physically in the last year or so, but I've been watching mountain bike events for almost 7 years now. I've always loved the Crankworx tour and hope to go see it in person one day. Same with the UCI tournaments, as I mentioned, specifically the downhill events. For the time being, however, I will watch them online. (Quick note: no shame towards anyone mentioned except major streaming services like discovery+ and Youtube. Red Bull TV is perfectly fine in my opinion, and I really hope it stays that way. They make great stuff and they do it for free, so I appreciate them.)
You can imagine my frustration then when it took me almost 45 minutes to even get to a spot where I could watch. This morning I thought to myself "man, it'd be nice to watch Jackson Goldstone compete. I'll go onto the Red Bull TV app and watch the downhill race."
it's not there...
"Alright then, I'll check the UCI website. Maybe they changed it recently? Oh okay, looks like they did. Now it's on discovery+. Great, I can do that. Let me just download the app."
it's not there either...
"Okay, this is getting kind of annoying. I thought they said it was on here? Maybe I'll check again. I'll try the website this time. Oh look! It's there, finally I found it. Let me login."
"There's no way. I know for a fact this is the password because I just logged in. Maybe I did get it wrong. Hmmm... nope. Maybe it's the VPN?"
"This is frustrating, but I've put so much time into this that I'm going to do what it takes. Fine, let me just find another provider. Okay, the GCN. I can do that. Alright, let's create an account and sign in..."
page loads, refreshes, "incorrect password"
same thing again. third time, page refreshes and I'm logged in.
"Thank god. That was insanely annoying, but now I can watch it."
If you want to know, I ended up rage-buying (?) it, watching it for about 3 minutes, and then cancelling the subscription because I was still angry about how long it took me to get to this point.
This brings me to another point. Along with the annoying loops and massive walled gardens of streaming platforms nowadays, the more "free" platforms are starting to tighten their grip. Almost every video I've watched on Youtube nowadays has had unskippable 15 second and consecutive 5-15 second ads. Sometimes, it's on a video that's shorter than the time it takes to watch the ads! I hate this, because I want to be able to support the creators I have for so long by watching their work, but advertisements are getting extremely annoying and invasive, to the point where I can't take it anymore. I've started paying for Nebula because a lot of my favorite creators are already on their and I'm glad I can support them that way, but the rest of them are probably going to be left behind due to the insane amounts of ads that Youtube has been pushing recently (or maybe my tolerance being drastically lowered). I'm a huge fan of cyberpunk media and a popular trope is the omnipresent advertising. It looks beautiful in places like Blade Runner or Ghost in the Shell, but it is extremely annoying in real life and it's starting to feel like we're actually getting worse than the portrayals of exemplified social problems through art (aka cyberpunk media).
tl;dr: I'm tired of advertising and media streaming platforms.