R550 million SABC-Multichoice deal signed by former minister Dina Pule: report

The_Unbeliever

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The Department of Communications said that its SABC joint task team is looking into the SABC-Multichoice contract.
Closing the stable door after the horse has bolted? :erm:
 

HavocXphere

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You know the sad thing is that I don't even need to read the article to know that somehow this deal is going to screw over the average taxpayer.

EDIT: Read the article. Yep. Rights to an asset paid for by taxpayers sold to a private corporation.
 
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Bern

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Hmm, it would be nice to know what content specifically, surely a lot could be deemed public and therefore not subject to exclusivity deals?
 

markings

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As far as I can make out it means that as long as the SABC signal is freely available, even as an unencypted signal on an otherwiese encrypted platform there is no problem. IMO the SABC signal must be freely available to all anyway. It is a meaningless clause.

Because the SABC is a public broadcaster the exclusive access to parts of the archives is probably illegal.
 

Petec

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EDIT: Read the article. Yep. Rights to an asset paid for by taxpayers sold to a private corporation.
This!

Now wait for rumblings start about upcoming legislation banning all p2p file sharing proggies and systems.

"You will pay premium for what we tell you to watch"
 

IdlePhaedrus

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I don't understand why the whole DTT conditional access thing is holding up set top box production. The STB model I bought in the UK for 30GBP (unsubsidised) has a smart card slot that can be used for conditional access to channels that are encrypted in the same way that the DSTV decoder has. In the UK, on DTT, they have almost as many channels has we have on DSTV:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_digital_terrestrial_television_channels_(UK)

Read it an weep. Note, that in that list, the Free To Air channels are all unencrypted.

Anyway, the STB should be standards compliant and usable for both unencrypted and encrypted content (using a smart card). It should be part of the spec and the box should already be in production.

Also, since the SABC News channel (and possibly SABC 1-3 as well) has to be unencrypted by law, why is it encrypted on the Multichoice platform, and will be so on the new Sentech Freevision platform (ex-Vivid) on Intelsat 20 (http://www.lyngsat.com/Intelsat-20.html)

To be honest, satellite STB's should be exactly the same. I should be able to use the same decoder / hdd recorder for any bouquet from any provider on a particular satellite simply by putting a smart card I purchase from them in a slot at a nominal cost and a monthly rental. Much of Europe is going this way and there is great similar kit for DTT too. Why should I have one decoder / recorder for DSTV, another for TopTV, another for Sentech's FreeVision and another for e-TV's Platco and yet another for DTT. FFS, that's just stupid.

In the end it will all boil down to short-term lucre for the incumbents and the connected few.

This country really drives me nuts sometimes, why can't we learn from other's mistakes and take advantage of their progression through a set of standards and processes? Our lovely ANC government an our commercial incumbents seems hell-bent on repeating all the same mistakes that have already been made elsewhere despite the fact they are proven to fail eventually.

Disclaimer

I had DSTV until TopTV started. Then I installed TopTV, they lasted three weeks because their content was absolute rubbish. My DTT decoder lasted three months until my signal broke (works great at my folks place ten klicks down the road though). Closing my accounts with both DSTV and TopTV was a nightmare which lasted months for both operators.

I have done without any broadcast Television (except for three or four months on DTT) for just over three years. While I might be in the minority, I am not sure that I will be in the minority for a hell of a lot longer and broadcasters in South Africa really need to sort their **** out if they want to remain relevant.
 

Paul Hjul

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I don't understand why the whole DTT conditional access thing is holding up set top box production. The STB model I bought in the UK for 30GBP (unsubsidised) has a smart card slot that can be used for conditional access to channels that are encrypted in the same way that the DSTV decoder has. In the UK, on DTT, they have almost as many channels has we have on DSTV:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_digital_terrestrial_television_channels_(UK)

Read it an weep. Note, that in that list, the Free To Air channels are all unencrypted.

Anyway, the STB should be standards compliant and usable for both unencrypted and encrypted content (using a smart card). It should be part of the spec and the box should already be in production.

Also, since the SABC News channel (and possibly SABC 1-3 as well) has to be unencrypted by law, why is it encrypted on the Multichoice platform, and will be so on the new Sentech Freevision platform (ex-Vivid) on Intelsat 20 (http://www.lyngsat.com/Intelsat-20.html)

To be honest, satellite STB's should be exactly the same. I should be able to use the same decoder / hdd recorder for any bouquet from any provider on a particular satellite simply by putting a smart card I purchase from them in a slot at a nominal cost and a monthly rental. Much of Europe is going this way and there is great similar kit for DTT too. Why should I have one decoder / recorder for DSTV, another for TopTV, another for Sentech's FreeVision and another for e-TV's Platco and yet another for DTT. FFS, that's just stupid.

In the end it will all boil down to short-term lucre for the incumbents and the connected few.

This country really drives me nuts sometimes, why can't we learn from other's mistakes and take advantage of their progression through a set of standards and processes? Our lovely ANC government an our commercial incumbents seems hell-bent on repeating all the same mistakes that have already been made elsewhere despite the fact they are proven to fail eventually.

Disclaimer

I had DSTV until TopTV started. Then I installed TopTV, they lasted three weeks because their content was absolute rubbish. My DTT decoder lasted three months until my signal broke (works great at my folks place ten klicks down the road though). Closing my accounts with both DSTV and TopTV was a nightmare which lasted months for both operators.

I have done without any broadcast Television (except for three or four months on DTT) for just over three years. While I might be in the minority, I am not sure that I will be in the minority for a hell of a lot longer and broadcasters in South Africa really need to sort their **** out if they want to remain relevant.
I suspect that the people in the know on DTT are acutely aware that sans encryption and conditional access measures technology substitution can be a bitch:
http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/...olds-legality-of-aereos-tiny-antennas-scheme/

Of course the real problem is that there is a cesspool of rent seeking, regulatory arbitrage and other festering mercantilism at play here. DTT is entirely redundant in the South African context and adhering to standardized DVB-S2 coupled with IP broadcasting and if the commercial guys see a case DVB-H (DSTV mobile).
 

Paul Hjul

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On DVB-H before I am misunderstood I don't believe that mobile television really makes much sense but if the Multichoice and Vodacom can defy the international trends and use the spectrum effectively good for them
 

IdlePhaedrus

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I suspect that the people in the know on DTT are acutely aware that sans encryption and conditional access measures technology substitution can be a bitch.
Agreed, the same goes for using a proxy to access content that would not be available in a particular location (check out the threads re hulu and netflix in the off topic TV boards on this forum in this regard). That is not much different to using a 'chipped' Vivid decoder in Zimbabwe to access SABC et al or using a proxy on the net. That article just points to the fact that people want content at a good price or what they have paid for using their taxes (the SABC archive comes to mind).

On DVB-H before I am misunderstood I don't believe that mobile television really makes much sense but if the Multichoice and Vodacom can defy the international trends and use the spectrum effectively good for them
As far as I understand it, DSTV's DVB-H signal is broadcast on the DTT platform on the previously agreed DVB-T standard with a bit of additional encryption thrown in. I could be wrong on this. Some input from others in the know would be appreciated. I would like to know myself.

Essentially this all boils down to content and people wanting to watch what they want to watch when they want to watch it at the cheapest possible cost given what's in their wallet versus copyright and what the public broadcaster (funded by the tax payer) will let out for 'free' on FTA or subsidised by advertising.

Free or 'fair price' is always good, which is why I think your suggestion that in South Africa DTT is redundant is spurious given our context. The UK has nearly as many FTA channels on DTT as we have on DSTV. SKY satellite in the UK has nearly ten times as many channels via satellite as we have on DSTV.

For paid TV services in ZA we have to cough up about three or four times more for than the average household in the UK has to with less content. For free entertainment we have virtually zilch.

Pule made it worse on all fronts.
 
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Musicmp3

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So I wonder whose greasy smelly palms got fattened with a kickback?? Maybe the Hawks/Scorpions, whoever, should investigate!
 

ThinkCentre

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The delay in Setup boxes is actually causing the need for them to diminish because all new TVs should be DTT compatible.
 
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