by clicking the arrows at the side of the page, or by using the toolbar.
by clicking anywhere on the page.
by dragging the page around when zoomed in.
by clicking anywhere on the page when zoomed in.
web sites or send emails by clicking on hyperlinks.
Email this page to a friend
Search this issue
Index - jump to page or section
Archive - view past issues
Golf Australia Express : Issue 42
IT'S A SAD SIGN for our times that the US Open was not broadcast on free-to-air television. And I don't believe I'm being melodramatic. It reflects a deeper trend in society, one that demands we pay for everything. And that, in itself, sounds reasonable enough---free lunches have always been hard to come across. But more often than not, we are paying for things that not so long ago were considered--- in part---a community service, and the community (through the government) helped fund them. In the absence of such support the coverage of sport is increasingly a pay-as-you- go affair. First we were asked to accept an increasingly bold advertising presence---it was essential, we were told, to cover the costs of the modern game. Tournament naming rights have been in the grips of corporations for so long it is hard to remember when it was not that way---or even believe it ever was so. But painting the pinnacle of our games with brand names THE LACK OF FREE-TO-AIR COVERAGE OF THE US OPEN IS SYMBOLIC OF OUR TIMES, WRITES WILL HONE. A MAJOR MISTAKE with Will Hone IN HONING was only the beginning. As the ticket price to go and watch premier events skyrocketed, so did the value of their broadcast and in a market-driven world, value is everything. Not the intrinsic value of a thing, but the monetary value arrived at by a system of bidding and being ever ready to pay more than the next person. In such a climate, it was only a matter of time before free-to-air television stations lost the battle to multinational media conglomerates that sourced oceans of advertising dollars and commanded a hoard of people willing to pay for the privilege of watching a game. And that time is well suited to current thought. We have gradually come to accept that we should pay for the very roads we drive on, where in ages past such things were paid for by our taxes. The US Open, in comparison, is a splinter in a furniture factory---but it is a splinter that pricks and tweaks with every move of the hand. It is one of the great championships, and it has been stolen from the public. I don't know how much was paid for the deal (traditionally those details remain undisclosed) but I hope they realise they sold much more than a broadcast---they sold an entire audience who cannot afford the luxury of even watching their sport. And that is a crying shame. OTG They sold an entire audience who cannot afford the luxury of even watching their sport. TELL US YOUR THOUGHTS