In a super secret vote around Christmas, the Senate decided to let streaming services like Netflix share what you’ve been watching. Soon everyone will know all of your guilty secret shows. Mother Jones outlines exactly what the new law says. Part of me thinks that this is just another invasion of my privacy, and I’m really not happy with information about what I chose to watch on my time can be sold. I’m hoping there’s a way around this. But the other part of me wants to laugh at whoever is looking at my streaming interests.
What will they find? Basically it’s been a lot of watching shows I missed in the “90s.” I say the 90s because most of these shows were actually the early 2000s, but in my mind that’s still “the 90s.” I’m going to give a hint to my age and say that I was in high school at the very end of the 90s. I was in college in the beginning of the aughts. You see, I used to be a very busy person. In high school I had an after school job. I was in color guard. I had a social life. In college I usually went to class, spent a lot of time writing papers, hung out with friends, partied occasionally, and slept whenever I could. Television, while always important as a way to relax, was never a priority. I spent way less time watching TV than I do now. In a way, I blame college. I learned to look deeper into the media around me; find what message a tv show or movie tried to convey and what it was saying about society in general. I was an English major with a Media Studies minor.
So I missed a lot. I certainly was never in front of my TV the same night every week to keep up with a show. I remember the first time I was super bummed about not being able to follow a show regularly. It was either Full House or Home Improvement, and I had to miss it because of softball practice (just another reason to hate softball). In high school I missed a lot of episodes of Friends. I also missed the whole Dawson’s Creek phase.
Now that my TV watching habits have changed (in that I both have more time for television watching, and I can watch what I want when I want), Netflix is providing me with the perfect opportunity to catch up on what I missed.
I’m starting with West Wing and Felicity. My husband may mock me for watching both (more so for Felicity), but I think this is part of the reason why Netflix streaming exists.
So while I don’t mind people knowing that I’m satisfying my younger self by catching up on what I missed, I am sad that our privacy rights are being eroded once again.