-not very eco- Nomical
Why oh why should we Indonesian subscribers to ESPN and Star Sports have to put up with wrestling, golf, so-called extreme sports and TBA (to be arranged?) rather than the world's most popular sport as exemplified by the English Premier League?
I'm not that great a fan of the EPL, mainly because the footballers with the most sublime skills in the world display them there in return for a millionaire's lifestyle and income. There is a great disparity in wealth between the Manchester Uniteds and Chelseas and the lesser lights who occasion, perhaps, greater passion.
I'm thinking of such clubs as Charlton, from whence I come, Carlisle, the homebase of Dave Jardine, an occasional contributor to Jakartass, AFC Wimbledon, which is not (yet) in the football league, is supported by Indcoup and Barnet, which has yet to reach the heights of (even) Carlisle and which, for a reason I can't quite fathom, is supported by Son No.1.
We can all talk fairly knowledgeably about the EPL and we all wonder how our teams would fair in the rarified realms of the EPL. Above all we will moan that not enough money is being dribbled down to the lower reaches and the grassroots.
Too little is being done to encourage kids to play the easiest game in the world. All you need is a fairly flat piece of ground, a couple of cans to be the goalposts and something to kick, even if it's just a ball of rags. Such a game costs nothing, but can bring hours of enjoyment, healthy exercise and engender team work ~ what's an attack if there's no defence? Aren't these life's most valuable lessons?
But even these must be controlled, often in the name of Corporate Social Responsibility. No longer are we mere mortals expected to provide our own pleasures; all have to be owned and sold to those with the greater spending power. If TV is the opium of the masses, then our narcotics are provided by some really greedy bastards. Either that, or we are witnessing a disenfranchising of the masses from the opiate of their choice.
A couple of weeks ago, Chief Executive Officer of Astro All Asia Networks (AAAN) Robert Odendaal said: "Across the region, the Group is actively seeking to expand its distribution platforms and content development initiatives, particularly in under-catered markets such as Indonesia and India. Pending final authorization from the Indonesian authorities, we are in active discussions to formalise the basis of a corporate relationship. Meanwhile, the Astro service, which is available under a trademark licensing arrangement, continues to grow, with approximately 80,000 subscribers to date, representing some 25% share of the Direct-To-Home (DTH) market."
Surely it is against foreign investment rules for a non-Indonesian media company to exercise monopolistic control of TV channels here in Indonesia through pricing the terrestial channels out of the market and depriving 75% of the Direct-To-Home (DTH) market access to already paid for broadcasts.
What is much worse in my humble opinion is that Astro may be serving some 80,000 subscribers here, but what about the rest of the population, some 230 million of us?
When, last year, they threatened to deprive us of the FA Cup Final , the government got involved and Astro were fended off. That they are renewing their attacks on the Indonesian airwaves is now offensive.
Labels: media, social psychology