Garbage Economy

I just finished reading an article about Sony’s new super-thin LCD tv’s.  I was attracted to the article just curious to know how thin they were.  While reading the article, at the end, a disappointing statistic was mentioned about the lifespan of these new TV’s.  Apparently, these, like the plasma and current LCD tv’s will only last about 10 years of nominal use (aka 8 hours a day, every day, for 10 years).  What’s the point of purchasing these again?  Oh, it’s the attraction of newer-better-smaller technology.  Well, if it doesn’t last 20 years then it’s really not worth it.

My parents bought a Zenith TV a long time ago and that TV lasted 20 years.  I have a 32″ RCA old fashioned tube tv that I bought new in 1997.  It’s worked without failure since I took it out of the box.  (Though I haven’t actually watched TV in well over a year, my Playstation still works fine)  I suspect that this tv will go for another 10 years before it retires.

It’s stupid-crazy how we’re always being forcefed about conserving energy, protecting our environment, recycling, etc but at the same time, in the name of greed, companies dish out these new products with short lifespans that eventually end up in a landfill somewhere.  It’s not just TV’s but computers, cellphones, and even those low power flourescent light bulbs are toxic to the environment because they contain mercury in the gas of the bulb itself.  We’re trying to have a low-paper environement but at the same time we get bombarded weekly with junk in our mailboxes.  When approached with the concept of using less energy in my city by cutting down on the amount of lights that pointlessly blare their glows into the sky instead of the ground, they pat your shoulder and tell you, “we’ll look into it.” Then they go and raise city taxes because they don’t have the money to pay the bills.  Then, back on topic, we have electronics makers that quite literally create timebomb products.  If you’re warrantee only lasts for 5 years, then there’s a damn good chance that in the 6th year you’ll need a new one.  Why?  So that you will once again fill the pockets of those garbage making industries. 

If I was a businessman, it would make for bad business to make products that last forever and with the highest quality.  It will turn out that I’d hit a point where the income won’t cover expenses because all my products have been sold and will never need to be replaced.  I’d have to fold up my business at that point.  Of course, I’m talking from an idealistic point of view.

So, apparently the big businesses out there have decided that 10 years is as long as any TV set should work.  After that you should get a new one.  You know, Moore’s Law, but for TV’s.  (Moores Law is the underlying principle behind why people need to buy new computers every 3 years in order to keep up with the technology)


~ by aeroslin on October 3, 2007.

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