23.10.09

SEEING RED

For the last few years the BBC has been showing live coverage of both tables from their snooker events on the red button for viewers in the UK.

Most viewers access this through the Freeview set top box on channels 301 and 302.

They won't be able to any more as channel 302 is being axed next week because it will be used for a HD channel initially only available in London and Manchester.

On the face of it, this means that only one table will be available to view from December's UK Championship, and even that is not guaranteed as there will be other things having to go on channel 301 as well.

The BBC today issued a rather vague statement, which said: "we are doing everything we can in conjunction with our colleagues in Sport to schedule events to ensure that we try and accommodate all the major sporting events on Freeview."

That is some way short of a promise, or even a plan.

The picture should become clearer when the UK Championship begins.

However, the fear is that the next time the presenter tells you to press the red button when a match is poised at a vital stage because the BBC need to get off for some quiz show, you may be disappointed.

Thankfully, they will still show both tables on their website and Sky customers will not be affected by the changes.

30 comments:

Anonymous said...

so if you have sky nothing will change is that correct?

Anonymous said...

i have already experienced something similar when grand prix was on - my parents were unable to access table 2 coverage on the red button when viewing digital tv through the inbuilt digital in their relatively new samsung tv. they had always been able to have a choice of tables in the past. for some reason, on a considerable number of occasions they were unable to watch the 2nd table. when i checked if both matches were being streamed on the bbc website, they were - but it did say digital viewers were unable to access table 2? -

all in all, not good, and little or no explanation why!! grrrrrrr

mr d

Anonymous said...

I love Sky :)

Rodney 'Dave' Trotter said...

So to clarify - for anyone who watches through the red button on Sky or Virgin everything stays the same?

Anonymous said...

This is a major disaster! I have grown to love and rely on my trusty red button.

Anonymous said...

that is a real shame! i've always enjoyed switching between the tables if i wanted to!

Greg said...

This is stupid. I have Sky... but it's yet another terrible decision by the BBC, ripping off the license payers as usual...

Anonymous said...

pay for sky and you get it...

Rob said...

"So to clarify - for anyone who watches through the red button on Sky or Virgin everything stays the same?"

That's right. Freeview supports only a small number of channels so to introduce HD they're forced to axe 302. There are no such limitations on Virgin and Sky.

BBC's perspective here:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/theeditors/2009/10/change_to_freeview.html

Anonymous said...

Just as well there is no sponsor to upset at the lack of coverage.

southerner said...

This is nothing new. Freeview viewers have quite frequently been restricted to only one table in the last year or so. I have complained about this before, but only ever received the usual BBC brush-off.

Anonymous said...

That's a nightmare for us freeview viewers. Dramatic matches on freeview included Swail/Wengbo in the world championships.
regards
Dean.

Anonymous said...

This makes it clearer than ever that the customer in the UK should be faced with two choices, either subscribe to Sky and waive your license fee or continue to pay the license fee and subscribe to freeview. the BBC should not expect a license fee from those in possession of an all round better package through Sky.

stuartfanning said...

Most people don't have Freeview Dave!!! 9.5 million families have Sky and several million have Cable. Surprised you even said it Dave as you work for Eurosport which is not on Freeview/TopUp TV.

Anonymous said...

amazes me the amount of people who expect something for free.

and before you all reply with stuff like "we pay a license fee"....so do we all, but fans of every sport cant get every broadcast for free on red button that is also available on satelite (eurosport) etc.

get your wallet out!!

Dave H said...

There are 18m homes in the UK with Freeview

Anonymous said...

who is that last comment aimed at dave, or is it just a general info statement?

Dave H said...

It was stated that most people don't have Freeview.

However, more people have Freeview than Sky.

Anonymous said...

ta

Greg said...

Sorry, but the attitude of some people here is unbelievable. How much is it to ask of them, to cover two tables for one week, or two weeks at the crucible? What the hell is the point of having the red button at all if they're not going to use it to cover comprehensively these sports that the BBC has promised extensive coverage of? And they've axed it just so they could offer Freeview HD! News flash: Most people who can afford a HDTV probably aren't using Freeview! They are probably using Sky or some other "premium" service...

I hate the BBC and their mindless gimmickry!

Anonymous said...

Snooker The Fine Art Method
A secret is wasted if not shared
Dear Dave
Thanks for such an interesting thread on the technique of snooker and the intricate mechanics of snooker balls.
What two colour of shirts Dave would have really drawn the crowds. Two different war tartans and playing in kilts would have put more than "Bumbs on Seats". Keep thinking Dave. Mr hey you

Anonymous said...

"amazes me the amount of people who expect something for free.

and before you all reply with stuff like "we pay a license fee"....so do we all, but fans of every sport cant get every broadcast for free on red button that is also available on satelite (eurosport) etc.

get your wallet out!!"
_________________________________

if you want Sky Sports you pay for it if you want BBC Sport full service why should we have to pay to get sky?

its a service the BBC Offers but you have to give your cash to Rupert Murdock or Richard Branson to get it.

Anonymous said...

Why has'nt my comment been on, it was about watching sports on the internet?.

Anonymous said...

its a service the bbc used to offer, but it has now reduced this service, making what you posted NOT TRUE

!

Anonymous said...

Why are you all crying? People outside the UK can't even watch a complete tournament of snooker without paying for eurosport player.

Anonymous said...

Well, at least BBC are not cutting of internet livestream.

Anonymous said...

well said the last two comments (up to 11.34pm)

some people just think its their right, cos they pay a license fee.

plenty of other sports dont get as good a coverage as snooker.

some just think its their right that if they get something it should always be the case and dont consider that theres loads of other circumstances in decisions like this.

the beeb didnt make this decision just to deliberately upset some snooker fans.

seems folk would moan if the world final from now on had a 5 minute delay, cos thats just not what they got before.

stuartfanning said...

Sorry Dave but you initially claimed that most people had Freeview. That obviously isn't the case. You can say that more people have it, but a substantial minority have Sky or Cable.

Dave H said...

No, I said most people watch the BBC's interactive stream on Freeview, which is true

Claus Christensen said...

But eurosport player will still have two table coeverage, right? Just to make sure.