$160 Million for a new Satellite Service, WTF Conroy?

January 6, 2010 — 5 Comments


The Rudd Government will spend $160 million over four years to provide satellite-based digital television services to people in regional blackspot areas, Communications Minister Stephen Conroy said….

Under an agreement reached with television broadcasters, broadcasters would upgrade more than 100 existing regional analog ‘self-help’ transmission facilities to operate in digital, while the Government will fully fund and build a new digital satellite broadcasting service for regional viewers.

WTF Conroy? a new digital satellite service broadcasting primarily commercial channels?

Wait, isn’t there already a service that does that?

Wikipedia: Optus Aroura

Sure, it doesn’t offer all the digital channels, but according to Wikipedia, it’s a DIGITAL service.

Given the Optus satellites offer Foxtel digital channels, why exactly is a new satellite service needed? Why can’t you upgrade the existing one?

But better still: why is the Government subsidizing commercial TV in regional areas to begin with? After all, it’s not as though these areas can’t get pay TV to begin with. Wait, that’s the same satellites again…hmmm. Why not just subsidize a pay tv connection for those who want it (not that the idea is entirely fair), after all, it would probably be cheaper.