Who has got the cure for the sit-at-home blues? Ask Dr Grabthar. Now with bigger, easier to read font!

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

[Sport- sort of] Broadcast rights are human rights too!

Television sinks to new depths. Or rather BACK to new depths.

TV3 has announced that next year those who want to watch free-to-air rugby games will have to get stuffed.

"Negotiations remain in progress and are by no means a certainty," said [CanWest MediaWorks chief executive Brent] Impey. "Six years ago free-to-air delayed rugby rights were important and we were delighted to get them. Three years ago, with the Lions tour this year, it was also very beneficial to get them. As we go forward and Sky's penetration is increasing, they are less of a priority."

He said if the company did buy the rights, Super 14 and NPC rugby would be broadcast off-peak, outside prime time. That would mean before 6pm or after 10.30pm - possibly at 4pm on a Saturday or Sunday.

Is Mr Impey saying we are our own worst enemy? By wanting better television we have foolishly forked out for Sky* (pay TV, for those non-kiwis). This means free-to-air stations think we don’t wan to watch free-to-air sport.

On the weekend, the Canterbury versus Otago NPC semi-final achieved 14 per cent of TV3's target 18-49-year-old audience on Friday night.

Saturday night's Auckland versus North Harbour match had a 10 per cent audience share.

These ratings aren’t because we don’t care about watching free rugby. It’s because the NPC is boring. Had you told everyone that the games would be upset victories the ratings would’ve been huge. Apparently crowds at Jade Stadium were tiny: does this mean that people Cantabrians don’t want to watch home games anymore or is it because all the fans thought Canterbury would be playing in the final?

It is about time that SANZAR and the NZRU took game by the balls and made it an exciting contest again. Then they can tell Sky that they will only get the broadcast rights IF Sky shows one First Division (or Super 14) game free-to-air every week.

Fuck, Winston Peters, I thought you were all about “national values”. Why aren’t you pushing for free rugby? Or do you hate New Zealand?

*The only NZ city that is exempt from the pointing-finger-of-blame is Wellington. In Wellington you are lucky if you can get more than three channels on a normal aerial (we get TV3 and TV2 and very blurry staticy C4).


Jack Yan said...

My father made an interesting device, but probably quite simple for those with a bit of an electrical background. It’s a switch, with an external and an internal aerial plugged in to it. The internal is at a different direction to the external. Watching Prime? Other than requiring a labotomy, you can switch to the external aerial. Watching TV4? Other than requiring compulsory deafness, you can switch to the internal. It gets around most of the reception problems, with the down side being setting VCRs on timer—you need to make sure the right aerial setting is used when you leave.

Hadyn said...

Wow brilliant!
I'm going to invite over my electrical engineering friend to help me build one of those.
Though perhaps I need to think carefully about whether I want to see Sing Like a Superstar or Punk*d any clearer.