Al Gore and Sky Italia

Al says his Current TV is being forced off Sky Italia because he\’s hiring Keith Olbermann in the US.

Sly says that Current TV wanted more money for the fewer viewers it was delivering.

A News Corp spokesman said: \”The non-renewal of Current TV\’s carriage agreement with Sky Italia is purely commercial. Current TV asked Sky Italia for double the carriage fee when prime-time viewing had fallen by 40% in the past year. Sky Italia\’s offer was in line with the market and reflected the performance of the channel. It had nothing to do with politics.\”

No, I dunno either, make up your own mind.

12 thoughts on “Al Gore and Sky Italia”

  1. Gotta keep in mind as well that Sky Italia is not really seen as right wing as it’s relationship with Mediaset (which is owned by a certain “right wing” politician) is not really the best in the world.

    So the idea that Sky Italia would want to cancel a left wing voice doesn’t really make sense.

    Would also be good to keep in mind that not only did prime time viewing fall by 40%, it fell from 3600 (yes THREE TOUSAND SIX HUNDRED) to below 3000 (yes THREE THOUSAND)

  2. Didn’t ‘Air America’, a leftie radio show in the US, similarly go under because there’s just not the audience demand for it?

    I recall at the time (think the Bush administration was in power) there were dark rumblings that it was down to dirty deeds by the vast right wing conspiracy…

  3. (Current TV is actually really good. I’ve never seen Olbermann – perhaps he’s staying in the U.S. – but they’ve shown some great documentaries. Especially when it’s remembered that we’re lumped with “Made in Chelsea”, “Supersize vs. Skinny” and other variants on the “let’s all laugh at freaks” theme.)

  4. “Current TV is actually really good.”

    Well if it were people would presumably be watching it?

  5. Somehow I don’t think “we should carry Current TV at a loss because BenSix thinks it’s ace and Beethoven is better than Lady Gaga” is the sort of commercial decision a programming director is likely to be making. Besides, Gaga in a fishnet body stocking vs. Beethoven in same? Swings and roundabouts, mate.

    From my personal aesthetic standpoint, Olbermann is a disfiguring excrescence on any network anywhere. He is a pompous, vain, petty-minded blowhard with pretensions of intellectual credibility utterly without any real underpinning. He started out as a sportscaster and mutated into this vein-popping Left-wing revivalist preacher. He claimed to have a degree from Cornell when in reality it was from their Ag School. Giving him a political punditry show is like having David Pleat present Newsnight.

  6. Unless some bizarre quirk of the english language has escaped me “it’s good” doesn’t imply “and should therefore be recommissioned”.

    Olbermann is tedious, though. I liked him when I shared his prejudices.

  7. ” More people are listening to Lady Gaga than Beethoven. Is Born This Way a finer work than the 9th Symphony?”

    Rigth, as if comparing the number of people that have in the last 3-5 years listened to one of the n artists of the last 3-5 years with the number of people that have in the last 3-5 years listened to one of the top y artists in the last 300 years means anything. What about comparing the number of people that have in the last 300 years listened to Beethoven with the number of people that have in the last 300 years listened to Lady Gaga? Beethoven would still win…

  8. I should, perhaps, have chosen a more suitable analogy but I can’t believe you think that something’s quality is measured in its popular appeal. The idea, for example, that Avatar was the finest cinematic work of 2010 (or Katy Price the greatest novelist in our Sceptred Isle) is too depressing to imagine…

    Don’t get me wrong, I’ve no desire to lecture people as to what they should enjoy, but it was you who introduced this strange objective standard.

  9. Sky Italia (Tom Mockridge) are the liars. He offered to renew Current . . but after Rupert told him (kick them off), he quickly recanted and withdrew the offer . . . and told us they would pay all of our shut down costs. Uh, I don’t think you do that when someone isn’t performing, you do that when you’re trying ‘bribe’ someoen to go away quietly. We will NOT go away quietly. Rupert is abusing power!

  10. “strange objective standard.”

    Sorry, since when was number of viewers a strange standard to judge commercial TV by?

    Gumby: that’s well because Rupert owns Sky Italia which means that it’s his and not yours… welcome to the grown up world of doing business where counterparties change their mind all the time.

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