Current Blames Satellite Provider, Fox, When Customers Reject Channel

Current continues its swirl at the bottom of the toilet:

Al Gore‘s Current TV channel in the UK is facing closure after BSkyB – part owned by Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation – axed it from its pay-TV lineup.

Cue whining:

Joel Hyatt, chief executive of parent company Current Media and co-founder of the channel with Gore, said: “Sky is shutting down an intelligent alternative to mass market programming.”

He added: “By doing so, Sky is once again discriminating in favour of the networks it owns and the points of view News Corporation agrees with.”

Joel Hyatt, Al Gore.

If Hyatt wants to blame someone for discrimination, someone point him in the direction of a mirror. It’s discriminatory to his liberal audience to broadcast Grade Fecal content and expect people to be attracted to it. What, liberals don’t like good programming? (Don’t answer that.) Hyatt’s product is unappealing, as declared by the market, and here he demonstrates why progressive radio and television fails: instead of retooling his product, he decides to blame someone else for why he sucks at his job. Rupert Murdoch didn’t force Hyatt and Mr. Internet Inventor to create a company whose content is based on liberal web shows no one but the people who make them care to watch. Brilliant idea in the wake of Air America! To put it another way: it’s like if the makers of 8-tracks and 8-track players blamed Best Buy for not carrying their products. Conspiracy!

Sky’s response:

BSkyB’s commercial director Rob Webster said: “Content is at the heart of Sky’s business and we’re committed to investing in the cut-through programming that matters most to our customers.

“We already spend more than 350m a year with pay channel partners, but we need to make this investment work hard in delivering high-quality, pay-exclusive content that gives customers more reasons to subscribe.

“On the basis that Current TV hasn’t made the impact with our customers that we’d hoped for, we’ve decided not to renew our retail relationship.

Run that through the BS filter and you get: “Customers don’t want it.” So Current’s response is to blame Sky for the customers rejecting Current’s offerings. Murdoch conspiracy! Murdoch is a capitalist. Hyatt’s claim that this is a conspiracy presupposes that his content was good and made money, two premises which have been soundly rejected by a) Sky’s customers and b) Sky’s revelation that Current wasn’t cutting it.

If the product was good, people would want it, and it would turn a profit. But it isn’t, so they don’t, and it doesn’t. No channel has a right to be on the dial; it must be earned. Current’s reaction is symptomatic of a culture that rewards kids on sports teams with trophies simply for showing up.