News Archive 2017

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Editorial: Sky Sports Monopoly - 15 May 2017

Monday, 15 May 2017

Sky Television's withdrawal of their lower cost FANPASS is another example of poor corporate behaviour by an organisation enjoying a monopoly on major sporting events.  This action deserves inquiry by the Commerce Commission.

Sky had offered potential subscribers a way in which they could access British and Irish Lions Tour of New Zealand coverage without being obliged to sign up to the added expense of a year's subscription.  They have now withdrawn the offer.

This action recalls the equally exploitive and anti-competitive offer made by Sky Television when they first established in NZ in 1987, which was to screen programmes free of interruption by commercials.  This offer was withdrawn as soon as Sky had netted a sufficient number of subscribers to allow them to exploit their sports monopoly.

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Editorial: Kiwi League Players hit the Cocaine - 15 May 2017

Monday, 15 May 2017

Former Kiwi Rugby League captain, Jesse Bromwich

Former Kiwi Rugby League captain, Jesse Bromwich

Kiwi Rugby League player Kevin Proctor

Kiwi Rugby League player Kevin Proctor

I must say I find it difficult to feel any sympathy for the two Kiwi Rugby League players who take a thumping from the Aussies [5 May 2017] and then proceed to snort cocaine.

On the other hand, these are immature overpaid professionals who earn their living by brawling in front of baying crowds who pay to see them do this, so we shouldn't expect too much of them.

They are immersed in double standards to such an extent that they surely would have to be in a permanent state of dazed confusion, even without the drugs.  The TV ads, their playing gear and the ground signage are all replete with ads commending the use of alcohol ...  and they are expected to themselves abstain from mind-altering substances like cocaine?

And then the media play the whole thing as if it were a national scandal!

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Letters to Editor: Our 'voice'? - 08 February 2017

The Dominion Post - Letters to Editor

For days now, TVNZ has been promoting itself as the voice of New Zealand and promising us Waitangi Day coverage from morning till night.

And what does it offer those who cannot afford Sky TV and want to watch something in the afternoon?  Four and a half hours of American football, for goodness' sake.

Apart from its being an absolutely pointless and idiotic game, where is its place on our so called national day?  TVNZ our national broadcaster?  Yee hah.

 KILIAN V de LACY, Levin

Letters to Editor: Sports coverage - 08 February 2017

The Dominion Post - Letters to Editor

What a waste of prime-time television viewing and monetary resources Television New Zealand has spent promoting the American "Super Bowl Live", a small minority sport here and easily viewed on pay-TV's Sky.

Instead of promoting sports we actually play and excel at, they pander to a few supporters and sponsors.

They do not televise live our national sports of rugby union and league, cricket, netball and golf, to name a few.

Our mainstream media, excluding Maori Television, has a history of ignoring lack of support for our sportsmen and women.

Delayed coverage of the one-day Chappell Hadlee cricket series against Australia, no coverage of the Auckland Nines, White Ferns, New Zealand Breakers, Netball Ferns Quad Series and Wellington Phoenix personifies that these overpaid executives have no vision or imagination when picking programming for New Zealanders who actually watch TV.

I have spent a lifetime regularly watching local and regional TV with absolutely no experience in the media, a showy degree in broadcasting or pretentious career in entertainment, but I know I can do a better job than existing programmers.


Letters to Editor: Pronounced Difficulty - 04 February 2017

NZ Listener - Letters to Editor

Is the inability of New Zealand cricket commentators to pronounce Colin de Grandhomme's name correctly the result of ignorance, arrogance or laziness?

Mind you, when TVNZ 1's sports anchor is unable to differentiate between "air" and "ear" ("The ball went flying through the ear") and tennis commentators annually maul the names of visiting players, perhaps it isn't surprising.  Surely it is not too much to expect all involved to be coached before going on air.

 Peter Smith (Devonport)

Editorial: Advertisers Hijack Your Right To Watch What You Want To - 02 February 2017

Thursday, 02 February 2017

We watch ads because we have to.  They're the price we pay for the opportunity to watch the programmes we want to.

Recently, many of us have discovered the set-top box, which allows us to pre-record programmes and then watch them at our leisure, and skip the commercials.

Now, however, the broadcasters have decided to force us to watch the commercial trash which precedes the programmes.  They have done this by doing away with a convention established when television was first established in NZ more than 50 years ago, called the FADE TO BLACK.  This constitutes a blank space between the programme proper and the commercial "break" (note the term BREAK, which indicates an interval of time between the programme proper and the blare of the huckster's voice. 

The broadcasters have done away with this interval, forcing us to watch the commercials, whether we want to or not.  There is no longer any physical space between the two, no opportunity to switch.

What happened to Freedom of Choice? 

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