Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Sunday blues, and we're on Sky

87 Responses

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  • Gareth Ward,

    Duncan, can I ask if Telecom have a business case to build their cabinets then why don't you? As in, why don't you build out from the exchanges yourself on your own fibre and own cabinets?

    Auckland, NZ • Since Mar 2007 • 1721 posts Report Reply

  • Robert van Bakel,

    Russel,
    your slamming of 'Big News', and your inveigh against the BBC generally is somewhat demeaning; to you I mean.

    I live in China and can tell you that the internet is a saviour; but, the BBC ranks equal if not higher, to my students and me; I listen to the BBC World Service daily, along with more than two hundred million others. What planet do you live on?

    You espouse 'twiiter' in the Iranian nonsense; good, me too. You talk of 'blogger' awareness, wonderful: Question; whom do you, and the other bloggers reach? The millions on the streets? I do know that the launching of the BBC's Farsi service in January had the Iranian Mullahs in all sorts of fatwahs. THIS was, and IS telling, for the problems now; not the 'twittering' of the wealthy, and upper middle classes.

    Before you bury world news, and world papers for a provincialism, that is at times embarassing, perhaps you should raise your head above the wall and see who MOST people are still getting their news from; Not withstanding your own worthwhile efforts on the NZ front.

    BTW, the Rugby World Cup and its doings or not, has not entered as a question my students ask about.

    China • Since Jul 2008 • 12 posts Report Reply

  • Max Call,

    Gio:

    I'm actually resisting the upgrade because I haven't quite worked out if I can set the decoder to change channels at preset times, which is a must for me (I don't want nothing to do with MySky.) You can do it with the ancient cable box that Telstra provides, believe it or not.

    i have ordinary digital SKY without MYSKY and we can book programmes using our remote. When a programme has been booked it automatically changes channel at the right time. You can 'unbook' also if you change your mind.

    Fruit Bowl of New Zealand… • Since Jun 2007 • 153 posts Report Reply

  • dubmugga,

    how capable of broadband speed is the new 3G cell networks or how cheap are satellites so everyone can get it equally whether living rural or urban ?

    ...it just seems a bit back asswards looking, digging channels to lay thousands of kilometres of fibre optic cable

    of course if they persist, then it might be a good time to buy a few ditch diggers and get into the cable laying business:)

    the back of your mind • Since Nov 2006 • 257 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    i have ordinary digital SKY without MYSKY and we can book programmes using our remote. When a programme has been booked it automatically changes channel at the right time. You can 'unbook' also if you change your mind.

    Thank you! That's a piece of information that eluded the customer service a few weeks ago... Much appreciated.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7352 posts Report Reply

  • B Jones,

    If the nice people at Freeview could add that "book programme" function to their boxes, that would make life a whole lot easier for me and my DVD recorder. Unless I leave my freeview on, and on the right channel, I can't set it up to record a programme when I'm not there.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 810 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    your slamming of 'Big News', and your inveigh against the BBC generally is somewhat demeaning; to you I mean.

    Steady on. I love the BBC. But it's a fact that the BBC makes and commissions a great deal of excellent factual programming that other public broadcasters can't even buy because of the way its commercial arm, BBC Worldwide, operates.

    Good documentaries will only be available as part of unattractive packages, or, more often, not available at all. I'm thinking of the Storyville strand (the three-parter 'The World's Biggest Chinese Restaurant' is simply brilliant) and Alan Yentob's long-running Imagine arts strand.

    We're finally to get old(!) episodes of Friday Night With Jonathan Ross bunged on UKTV on Sky, though. Whoopee.

    The whole sales system is basically broken.

    I live in China and can tell you that the internet is a saviour; but, the BBC ranks equal if not higher, to my students and me; I listen to the BBC World Service daily, along with more than two hundred million others. What planet do you live on?

    Again, steady on. The discussion wasn't about the merits of news networks per se, but about their consumer value as part of a Sky subscription.

    I do pay for Sky, but BBC World is the only news channel I watch much. CNN is mostly tedious and Fox News is strictly for ironic entertainment.

    Basically, unless there's a major news event on, I'm more likely to consume those channels via the internet on a story-by-story basis. But that's just me.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18810 posts Report Reply

  • Max Call,

    Thank you! That's a piece of information that eluded the customer service a few weeks ago... Much appreciated.

    You're very welcome!
    ...and you didn't have to wait in a phone queue listening to the worst music evah either. :-)

    Fruit Bowl of New Zealand… • Since Jun 2007 • 153 posts Report Reply

  • Robert van Bakel,

    Russ,
    I was trolling and dived in at the deepish end;
    Regards.

    China • Since Jul 2008 • 12 posts Report Reply

  • Andrew Geddis,

    "A group led by Ngapuhi's Tass Davis plans a campaign of protest ... targeting the homes of judges (really not okay, at all), on the basis that they are part of the system."

    Isn't there a certain irony in that the targeting of judges in their homes is lawful because of this decision...
    http://www.courtsofnz.govt.nz/cases/allistair-patrick-brooker-v-the-police

    "The Supreme Court has allowed an appeal by Allistair Patrick Brooker against his conviction for behaving in a disorderly manner when making a protest outside the home of a female police officer in Greymouth in March 2003. On a weekday morning, Mr Brooker had gone to the constable’s home where she was asleep after coming off night duty. After she answered his knock on the door, he had stood in the street outside playing his guitar and chanting a protest about the constable’s role in obtaining search warrants relating to his property some time previously. He had beenarrested when he refused to desist after the arrival of two other officers. By majority, the Court has concluded that, taking into account Mr Brooker’s right to freedom of expression guaranteed by s 14 of the New Zealand Bill of Rights Act 1990, his behaviour had not in these circumstances been disruptive of public order and was therefore not disorderly in terms of s 4(1)(a) of the Summary Offences Act 1981."

    Dunedin • Since Nov 2007 • 124 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Russ,
    I was trolling and dived in at the deepish end;
    Regards.

    No worries. You did have a point.

    But if you ever do spy 'The World's Biggest Chinese Restaurant', you should try and see it.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18810 posts Report Reply

  • Graeme Edgeler,

    "A group led by Ngapuhi's Tass Davis plans a campaign of protest ... targeting the homes of judges (really not okay, at all), on the basis that they are part of the system."

    Isn't there a certain irony in that the targeting of judges in their homes is lawful because of this decision...

    A one-off protest, sure, but I'd argue that the "targetting" of (e.g. repeated protests) the home of a judge (or any person) could be a specified act, and thus become harassment in terms of the Harassment Act 1997. Not criminal per se (without fear for safety) but potentially enough to get a restraining order and make further repetition illegal.

    Wellington, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 2999 posts Report Reply

  • Andrew Geddis,

    Graeme,

    You're probably right. But, of course, the Harassment Act will need its own NZBORA-consistent interpretation. Furthermore, as there are 150-odd apparently in this group, it may be a bit difficult to get such restraining orders as a practical matter. Then there's the "optics" problem of judges stopping people from protesting ... especially after saying the constable on the West Coast had to put up with it.

    Dunedin • Since Nov 2007 • 124 posts Report Reply

  • HORansome,

    Ah, Jonathan Ross. A friend of mine refers to him as the BBC's publicly-funded millionaire.

    Tāmaki Makaurau • Since Sep 2008 • 408 posts Report Reply

  • nic.wise,

    ... and the best thign about Media7: the podcast got fixed (or my iphone did) so part 1 is at the top, so it plays 1,2,3, not 1, go back into the list, select 2, back back into the list, select 3.....

    Nice :) Thanks to who ever did that. And, more to the point, to RB and SP and everyone else for publishing it in the first place!

    Nic (in London)

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 83 posts Report Reply

  • nic.wise,

    Urgh. I watched Jonathan Ross once on BBC (about 2 months ago - I dont own a TV, even tho I work for BBC Worldwide). He's AWFUL. A stale crossant could interview people better.

    <grump>

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 83 posts Report Reply

  • Peter Ashby,

    Re Brits buying up falling down European property for 'renovation'.

    Well firstly there will be lots fewer of those to come as the pound continues to head south vs the Euro (We should have joined a decade ago Gordon).

    Secondly when we were in Northern Italy we played a game as we drove around of spot the Brit-magnet ruin. Anything with a fully intact roof (broken ridge beam acceptable) was deemed off limits. There were lots of candidates.

    One of the funniest of those programs I saw was one couple who had bought and done up a semi ruin in Spain including units to rent to tourists complained bitterly when the Spanish decided to build an airport essentially at the bottom of the hill. To cater for the very tourists they wanted. You just can't please some people. The ones who never bother to learn the local language really get to me.

    Dundee, Scotland • Since May 2007 • 425 posts Report Reply

  • Brickley Paiste,

    Not criminal per se (without fear for safety) but potentially enough to get a restraining order and make further repetition illegal.

    Section 21(1)(d) of the Summary Offences Act might apply as well although they would need evidence of intention. The police might still be able to arrest them for it or get a warrant.

    Since Mar 2009 • 163 posts Report Reply

  • Duncan Blair,

    Duncan, can I ask if Telecom have a business case to build their cabinets then why don't you? As in, why don't you build out from the exchanges yourself on your own fibre and own cabinets?

    You certainly may.

    First allow me to provide some of the economics around why we can't build into the Chorus cabinets:

    The answer is a simple market share equation. Telecom (group - i.e. Chorus + Telecom Wholesale + Telecom retail) have effectively 100% market share outside of Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch. There are no competitors. We certainly have customers in these areas, but we are serving them via Telecom Wholesale connections. Potentially we could move these connection on to our own network if we built it, but all told Telecom's competitors have substantially less than 40% market share outside of the main centers.

    The main problem with the determination from our perspective was that the only option for backhaul presented is Gigabit Ethernet @ ~$1300 per month. The port price of ~$11 was actually kind of ok.

    The largest cabinets are serving around 300 households (compared with about 10,000 per exchange), and this is where the economics get tricky.

    If we went in and captured 10% market share pretty quickly, that would still mean that the cost of serving that customer was in excess of $55 per month before we even start looking at providing any kind of service to them or recovering the cost of installing the gear (i.e. just for the port and backhaul). Realistically you would need in excess of 30% market share before it started to deliver a meager return. Our experience thus far unbundling has been that despite offering faster broadband, more data, more features, better support and generally better value than the incumbent the exchanges where we have been the most successful we have still only captured around 20-25% market share over the past 18 months.

    Remember also that only around 60% of NZers currently have broadband, making this equation even harder.

    Now to your original question, why can't we build our own:

    If the economics of building into an existing cabinet were hard, then building a business case around getting a return on the captial outlay required to build our own cabinets is impossible. As mentioned above, Telecom can do it because they effectively have 100% market share (and only plan on losing at most 15% of it ever according to Paul Reynolds - speaking to Telecom shareholders a couple of weeks back).

    More importantly though, why would we build a second set of infrastructure? Dig up the same street twice? Have 2 cabinets sitting on your front lawn rather than one?

    The purpose of regulating the industry is to foster competition ensure that we use existing infrastructure efficiently. Surely that means that if we can all use one set of gear then we should.

    Hopefully that answers your question. Let me know if there is anything else I can help out with, or if you want me to clarify anything further.

    Duncan Blair
    Head of Brand and Communications
    Orcon

    Auckland • Since Mar 2008 • 12 posts Report Reply

  • Scott A,

    For me it's MySky (how did I even survive before MySky??), the Living Channel (yes! I confess! I prolly watch more stuff on the LC than on any other), UKTV (some great British shows on there), the Documentary/History/NatGeo channels, The Box (for Law&Order), and the sports channels so I can watch tennis at odd hours of the night and the occasional game of rugby.

    And WWE Pay-Per-Views.

    No, stop laughing! It's why I'm still with Sky!

    The wilds of Kingston, We… • Since May 2009 • 120 posts Report Reply

  • Robert van Bakel,

    Russel,
    I am unsubtle, or merely dim; what on earth do you mean, if I, 'ever do spy "The World's Biggest Chinese Restaurant"', I shoiuld, 'try and see it'?

    Am I being made the butt of some insider joke? What do you know that you're not telling me? I feel so used! heh!

    BTW I saw our dismal 'All Whites' get their first point in a major international comp against a near destroyed state called Iraq; well done the lads, they looked almost competant.
    Rob.

    China • Since Jul 2008 • 12 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    Robert, I think he was merely saying if you get a chance, watch that series. The vagueness may have something to do with how hard it will be for you to legally achieve that.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16598 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    Duncan, thank you for being so open here. Appreciate the unfitered background.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16598 posts Report Reply

  • Jarrod Baker,

    But your friend doesn't have 'digital cable', he has the regular Sky digital contraption that Sky subscribers get, it just happens to be sold by Telstra.

    Might be a similar decoder, but the signal enters his house via a cable from the road (the same cable that carries his internet connection) rather than via a satellite dish. I.e. digital cable.

    Not to mention that there's a Telstra-branded remote, Telstra-specific channel packages, and so on.

    Wellington • Since Dec 2006 • 31 posts Report Reply

  • Jake Pollock,

    Raumati South • Since Nov 2006 • 489 posts Report Reply

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