TV stations once were limited in the percentage of time that can be advertising. They got this restriction removed a year or so ago. It used to be something like twenty percent, or twelve minutes per hour. Now it is unlimited on ordinary TV stations.
What do the stations I watch do with this extra ad time? They advertise other programs on the same channel or carrier company. They advertise other media which is themselves “re-formed”, i.e. co-subsidiary companies such as radio or newspapers. They run the same ad twice in the same commercial break. They run the same ad and a shortened version in the same program slot.
Is real content that expensive? That’s for another dumb question. Is this large dilution of air time quality really selling more stuff? Am I going to start getting all my news from the Internet because it is faster, more complete, and any ads that are in it can be skipped over?
Why did TV stations think they needed more advertising? Is this like the tobacco industry, which at one time was a big advertiser.
One final dumb question: does anyone else out there think that the various “quit smoking” devices are becoming a substitute nicotine habit? That a dispenser of tiny, quick-hit oral nicotine pills is compared to a lighter? Should this advertising be limited, as tobacco advertising is?