Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Sky defends itself against state broadcaster's whining

Sky Television's Chief Executive John Fellet has mounted an excellent defence of his company up against TVNZ's bleeting moaning and whinging about losing sports rights because it couldn't bid enough for them. Fellet is reported in the Dominion Post saying:
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"a TVNZ submission to the Culture and Heritage Ministry calling for Telecom-like reforms to be imposed on pay-TV was "so incredibly filled with misrepresentation" that Sky intended to file a cross-submission to "jog their memory"."
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He claimed that forcing it out of the market for sports programming saying:
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"All the major sporting codes would go bankrupt if the Government prevented Sky from buying exclusive rights to sporting events"
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Probably not all going bankrupt, but they would lose more players to overseas teams and codes because they would lose a lot of money, then you'd wonder why people might want to watch. You see after all, pay TV is a way for people to see games they may otherwise visit if they lived near the venue (or may prefer to sit in their own homes than go out to a match).
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And to TVNZ's claim of being outbid by a broadcaster that people choose to pay for:
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"Sky had been outbid by TVNZ for television series made by Warner Bros and Disney and had dropped out of the bidding for those made by 20th Century Fox. "We haven't won anything, we keep getting outbid, and then they are complaining they are paying too much for it - I don't know what to do."
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Well indeed. He also points out that TVNZ opposed Sky buying Prime TV because it wanted Prime, a free to air competitor, to fall over. TVNZ naturally will never fall over because it is government owned.
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One of those entities that have enjoyed suckling off the state tit, the Screen Production and Development Association is also concerned about Sky. No doubt because Sky doesn't think it is worthwhile to pay for the overpriced programming that it produces, even though it benefits from state subsidies. That association has long lobbied for the government to force broadcasters to screen local content and lobbied for taxpayers to pay for more programmes they may not wish to watch.
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I'm sure it isn't looking forward to the Labour party led gravytrain becoming a bit less generous under the Labour-lite party. (though to be honest, who knows what National policy is?).

The thing is you don't have to pay for Sky TV, you are forced to pay for some programming on TVNZ and you are the taxpayers underwriting the risk of the business (and its devaluation under Labour in recent years).

2 comments:

sean14 said...

Talkback radio was getting stuck into TVNZ last night. It's professional sport, of course you have to bloody pay to watch it!

libertyscott said...

Excellent, seen little else about it. It's outrageous, TVNZ should simply be sold, it has been responsible for so much ignorance and statist thought in NZ. It dumbs down news and current affairs too much into the "what should government do" rather than the "should government do anything" argument