Posted by: explodingman | June 30, 2007

One TV Spigot

It has been a few years since SPH MediaWorks was absorbed by MediaCorp.

Is the situation any better? For the companies involved, probably yes. SPH got out of a loss-making operation. MediaCorp monopolizes the space again.

For one, I’m glad Channel U didn’t degenerate into something unwatchable. Sports fads lament the loss of SportsCity. Who still remembers that part of TV history?

But for TV junkies like me who feed on quality foreign entertainment, we have to watch them at ungodly hours. But that’s not the problem!

After MediaWorks disappeared from the scene, we now have to wait for ungodly months (or years even) just to be able to watch the latest imported shows.

Worse, some shows like Heroes, the latest breakout hit in the US, isn’t available on channel 5. You can guess how Singaporeans watch Heroes. (No, not via the company with the overused “hub” word.)

MediaWorks and MediaCorp used to fight tooth and nail for good shows. They even signed exclusive deals with studios like Paramount.

That’s what competition gets you. Monopolies don’t. I think this logic is crystal clear in the minds of Singaporeans, given the events in the past few months.

Pay StarHub for cable, you say? Then watch as they lament about increasing licensing costs for new programmes? Well, maybe I should try not paying the radio and TV licence.

If a country like New Zealand, with a similar population can sustain more TV stations, why not us?

Will SingTel’s new IPTV service be able to shake up the scene?

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