Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: The digital switch-off

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  • DexterX, in reply to giovanni tiso,

    I could not justify SKY TV on any basis.

    Most channels are crap, the movies I have already seen or I don't want to see them, the news is an infinite rotation of boredom once a story has broken - the only thing of interest to me is the sport - but we go to the pub to watch that when we really need to.

    With child minding our 3 year old has her own personal DVD player, has her own Library of books and discs and goes with us each week to Video Ezy to select her weekly viewing. She does not watch actually wtach TV and given the choise she prefers to sit on my lap and watch You tube.

    We spend more time listening to the radio or online than involved with TV. which is fast becoming History and perhaps expanding Public Address to a Waynes World online current formant oprlinking in with one has some merit.


    Russell's World. Hard News Time.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1157 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Withers, in reply to Russell Brown,

    The Blair government was in the thrall of Rupert Murdoch and Conrad Black. They did a lot to dilute and diminish global access to the quality programming of the BBC....because it blew the inferior commercial product out of the water, as often as not. To allow that to continue would see VERY bad press from the media barons.....so Tony Blair and his government folded. Plus, the BBC was causing trouble over their lies about Iraq...and they needed to weaken it and make behave.

    Now the UK has a Tory government that is even MORE hostile to media not owned by a billionaire they can cozy up to.....

    The same is happening here in NZ. The National Party of today is actively hostile to the ONLY significant media (TVNZ and RNZ) not owned by foreign corporates. In this sense, they are demonstrating - once again - they cannot be trusted without collective assets.

    I need no more proof. Thirty year of watching these stupid people do this to *our* assets is more than enough.

    Auckland • Since Mar 2008 • 279 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Withers, in reply to DexterX,

    I don't knowingly give Rupert Murdoch one cent. If he owns a single SKY share (and I think he owns a lot more then that), then I refuse to have it. It doesn't hurt that their content is crap....and I have too much going on in my life to sit around watching OTHER people play games of any kind.

    Auckland • Since Mar 2008 • 279 posts Report Reply

  • DexterX, in reply to BenWilson,

    So what are we in right now?

    I call it a recession.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1157 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Steve Withers,

    Now the UK has a Tory government that is even MORE hostile to media not owned by a billionaire they can cozy up to

    And some reckon their recent decision to bend over further might haunt them.

    So Rupert Murdoch has got his way – again. Not for the first time, the politicians have bent over backwards to accommodate News Corporation's commercial ambitions. Not for the first time, all other voices have been roundly excluded from any say in the grubby little bargain that Britain's most powerful media tycoon has managed to strike with a government apparently so desperate for the great man's blessing that it's willing to bend the rules to smooth his path.

    ...

    When they find themselves alone at the polls in some distant election, with the Murdoch media ranged against them and their traditional media allies squeezed close to death by the power of monopoly, ministers will rue the day they allowed themselves to be bulldozed into cowardly submission.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 15716 posts Report Reply

  • Rob Stowell,

    Because our land is cheap and plentiful.

    Jeez, when did you last buy a dairy farm? :)
    But it's a good point. There are dreadful subsidies that benefit no-one, damage the land, ruin economies. There are subsidies that clearly benefit one group, nation, region over others. And there are subsidies, I'd wager (without being able to name one, sorry!), that help the sane, efficient and economical allocation of resources.
    Ideology itself can be the enemy sometimes.

    Whakaraupo • Since Nov 2006 • 1353 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to DexterX,

    Russell’s World. Hard News Time.

    I don’t know how to break this to you, but last night I watched Master Chef.

    Although I would argue that my responsibility was diminished by having just seen The Clean play. I was high on that shit.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 17941 posts Report Reply

  • Danielle, in reply to Russell Brown,

    I don’t know how to break this to you, but last night I watched Master Chef.

    Quickly, all of you! He is fraternising with reality television! You must stone him for his ideological impurity!

    Charo World. Cuchi-cuchi!… • Since Nov 2006 • 3582 posts Report Reply

  • DeepRed, in reply to DexterX,

    We spend more time listening to the radio or online than involved with TV. which is fast becoming History and perhaps expanding Public Address to a Waynes World online current formant oprlinking in with one has some merit.


    Russell's World. Hard News Time.

    I believe Al Gore has such an outlet called Current TV.

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 3897 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen, in reply to Danielle,

    You must stone him

    Or throw perfectly cooked date scones

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3108 posts Report Reply

  • DeepRed, in reply to Danielle,

    You must stone him for his ideological impurity!

    Better still, enter him onto a game show. And not a pretend game show either. ;)

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 3897 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Danielle,

    Quickly, all of you! He is fraternising with reality television! You must stone him for his ideological impurity!

    I confess. I ... enjoyed it.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 17941 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso, in reply to Russell Brown,

    I confess. I ... enjoyed it.

    So long as you did so ironically, we're okay.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7315 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to giovanni tiso,

    or with some facial hair and a bicycle; that would be acceptable also

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 15716 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    But yeah, actually, I also enjoy Highway Patrol and Piha Rescue.

    I think New Zealand actually makes a fairly gentle sort of reality TV. We're quite good at the public-service obs-docs, not given to the cruelty-based formats.

    I felt pleased when idiot shows like Celebrity Treasure Island faded from favour, although I suspect that may have only been because it became impossible to find idiots to appear in them. And while Genevive Westcott's You Be the Judge died amid justfiable public scorn, UK digital channels have that sort of shit wall-to-wall, even now.

    Master Chef, commercial orgy that it is, is fun if you're a foodie, and it's not using precious tax dollars. So what the heck.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 17941 posts Report Reply

  • DeepRed, in reply to Russell Brown,

    I think New Zealand actually makes a fairly gentle sort of reality TV. We're quite good at the public-service obs-docs, not given to the cruelty-based formats.

    For sure. But how much longer can that last?

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 3897 posts Report Reply

  • nzlemming, in reply to Russell Brown,

    We're quite good at the public-service obs-docs, not given to the cruelty-based formats

    For that we have Parliament.

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 1701 posts Report Reply

  • John Holley, in reply to Jacqui Craig,

    We are with you on the Captain Mack (though you can get the DVDs via Captain Mack's web site)

    The bigger issue here is not my daughter watching 84 hours of TV a week (she doesn't) but that for the times during the day when she did watch TV there was a safe, quality free to air option with a strong local production content.

    Now you have to pay to get that. Who does this disadvantage? Obviously children in lower-socio economic households - who have also recently been disadvantaged by the changes to early childhood funding.

    What we are seeing across a broad spectrum of Govt funded services is a gradual shift to user pays which will disproportionately disadvantage the poor in NZ.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 118 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    Don't think anyone has already linked to this Herald story about TVNZ's deliberate strategic shift towards pay tv.

    Television New Zealand head of digital services Eric Kearley says the division is "here to make money" and the future is with pay TV.

    "There has been a lot of talk about media revolutions but the real revolution has been the move from ad-funded television to pay. As a broadcaster if we do not get into pay we are kind of stuffed," said Kearley.

    ...

    The TVNZ strategy is if you can't beat Sky TV join it, after realising that it could not convince the National Government to amend its Sky-friendly policies.

    ...

    Freeview was once a free to air bulwark to slow Sky's growth. But it has a secondary role in TVNZ's digital strategy. Kearley says: "We still support Freeview - but we are not going to launch channels that we cannot make money from.

    "We are a commercial organisation and shareholders have made that clear and we try to deliver dividends. That is non-negotiable.

    "It has yet to be proven content would boost uptake for Freeview," he said.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 15716 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    And Drinnan has a story today that Sky has too little debt for the liking of the financial markets, and nothing useful to buy. Game over?

    As free-to-air channels battle for survival, pay television giant Sky TV is headed for what market analyst Sarndra Urlich calls "an embarrassment of riches".

    Urlich of First New Zealand Capital says Sky is under-leveraged with an inefficient balance sheet. Profits had boosted Sky's asset levels but there were no apparent acquisition targets and little prospect of a boost in dividends or a share buy-back.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 15716 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    (I don’t see many Italians copying Kapiti cheeses – odd that)

    I know basically nothing about making cheese, but I'm happy to put money on the bit of the process that Italians really outstrip us on is what I'll call "post-cow". Whether that means they're better or worse than us at producing milk ("cow phase") I dunno.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6145 posts Report Reply

  • Rich Lock,

    Mozzarella is post-buffalo, though.

    Just sayin'.

    Edit: apart from all that mozzarella fior di latte which they make. Doh.

    back in the mother countr… • Since Feb 2007 • 2292 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    Yes, most mozzarella is made from cow's milk.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7315 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Sacha,

    Freeview was once a free to air bulwark to slow Sky's growth. But it has a secondary role in TVNZ's digital strategy. Kearley says: "We still support Freeview - but we are not going to launch channels that we cannot make money from.

    "We are a commercial organisation and shareholders have made that clear and we try to deliver dividends. That is non-negotiable.

    "It has yet to be proven content would boost uptake for Freeview," he said.

    Well, he's saying what he has to.

    But there's an effing big risk here for the government. The rationale for 6 and 7 was that they would help facilitate the move to digital terrestrial. That has gone fairly well, but the job's not done yet -- and they need to get to the digital switchover.

    When the analogue signal is turned off, there will be a bonanza of reallocated spectrum. There are plenty of potential uses for the unused frequencies. And governments make good money parcelling them out. They're going to look pretty stupid if they've tilted the market so far in Sky's favour that they can't get there when they need to.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 17941 posts Report Reply

  • DeepRed, in reply to Russell Brown,

    They're going to look pretty stupid if they've tilted the market so far in Sky's favour that they can't get there when they need to.

    As in Berlusconi stupid?

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 3897 posts Report Reply

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