Written by Media, Misc

Things That Currently Annoy Me

Sky emails me to tell me about the “Exciting New Improvements” they’ve made to the Sky Player (aka Sky Anytime – but since the success of the iPlayer, everything has to be similarly named). I can now watch if I have a Mac (or “MAC” in Sky-speak – isn’t that something to do with WiFi?), and they’ve added extra channels. They’ve also removed the previous restriction allowing it to be used on only one PC.
But it’s still fairly useless when the single thing that I’d like to be able to do is the one thing I can’t – I’m not allowed to stream Sky Sports. Now while I’m not saying that I’d waste valuable work time watching the cricket of Masters tennis, I’d like to be able to make that choice myself thanks. But Sky won’t let me unless I either take out a multi-room subscription (I live in a flat on my own so, no thanks), or I take their Broadband Max package. I already pay Sky a considerable amount of money a month, so no thanks.
Of course, I could just go out and buy a Slingbox which would do the job for me, but since Sky is worried that someone would be watching Sky One at home while I watched Sky Sports at work without them seeing any more cash, then I can’t. Rubbish.
Meanwhile, wasn’t the terrestrial FA Cup coverage poor at the weekend. I don’t mean the quality of ITV (or Setanta), but the limited number of games. When the BBC and Sky shared FA Cup coverage, the BBC had three matches while Sky had two. And I believe I’m right in saying that the BBC got first two picks as well. That’s clearly not the case with the ITV/Setanta deal where Setanta marginally has the upper hand.
On Saturday ITV had Hartlepool v West Ham at lunchtime and the main pick of the round, Man Utd v Spurs (Man Utd is always a channel controller’s pick of the round due to inevitable ratings). But that was it. The second choice fixture was probably the Liverpool derby which was on Setanta, as was the Notts Forest v Derby clash on Friday. Finally, Setanta also had Cardiff v Arsenal. I’d hazard a guess that ITV got first pick, Setanta picks two, three and four, with ITV getting the final choice.
All in all, the terrestrial viewer loses out, and I can assure the folk at Setanta that there’s no way I’m taking out a subscription with them – I’ve heard the horror stories of people who wanted to cancel later (you had to write a letter…).
Finally, yesterday’s Observer carried a story saying that culls of geese might be needed around Heathrow where they were causing more of a threat recently. This, of course, following the downed plane in the Hudson in New York a week or so ago.
The number of Canada geese in Britain is expected to rise to more than 200,000 by 2010, according to the British Trust for Ornithology, which monitors bird populations. That compares with just 3,600 in 1953.
Some scientists claim that they are now choosing to winter in Europe because of global warming.
So let’s see. Global warming causes geese to fly to Europe where they cause a hazard at Heathrow. We cull them, and then… build another runway at Heathrow, thus putting more CO2 into the atmosphere, speeding up global warming… You get the picture.
(But I am quite pleased that my employer will be playing the DEC Gaza appeal on air).