I received an email yesterday with the puzzling title “iTunes: Your Lost Download”. Needless to say, I was eager to figure out what the hell this was supposed to mean. I wasn’t aware of any download that had been “lost” in the process of me downloading it. I afforded a slight thought to the fact that iTunes now keeps reminding me to back up downloaded items — did it have to do with that? Was iTunes now keeping track of items being accidentally deleted and sending a phone home message to Apple to have an email sent to me to let me know?
Well, as it turns out, as one “television” vice I have is watching downloaded episodes of the show “Lost,” this email was in reference to a downloaded show. Having started only watching shows via download not too long ago, I’ve discovered that I approach the TV show files very diffferently from music. The file size is large and the files are often part of a series, still part of the ritual experience of watching television and keeping up with an ongoing cultural event. In my opinion, if I could download them for free with commercials, as long as the mechanism worked correctly and didn’t mess with the way that I *watch*, I think I would actually be fine with it. However, $2 is a small price to pay (cheaper than basic cable) per episode to keep up. The funny thing is, I treat it as a service, the same way that I would treat forking over $8-10 to see a movie or see a music artist play. I take away from it the experience, and honestly, I could care less about the file itself.
This leads me back to the question at hand. What was this email all about? Well, as it turns out, one of the episodes of Lost 7 episodes back, had some sort of glitch in it. Thinking back, I do think I remember something odd happening at some point, but it didn’t really affect my enjoyment of the show. (In fact, I believe it was one of the more lame episodes from this season.) Apple has informed me that it has put the episode in my download queue free of charge for when I choose to download it, but I really kind of don’t care. If they had informed me that my next download was free as a result, I would have been impressed, but I’m not really sure I have the patience to re-watch the episode to get the untainted experience of watching the show without the “glitch” in it.