So, as Dori mentions in her blog post today, it was a relaxing weekend in the Yellow House this week. We watched some DVDs, worked on a project, and did a bit more organizing of a couple of trips we have coming up before the year’s end. We got some things done that needed doing, but they were done at our own pace and without any self-imposed pressure or timelines. It was a good weekend – despite the weather!
I was also able to watch the highlights of the Ukraine v England World Cup qualifier on Saturday evening. You may not think that is anything remarkable, but there has been a controversy raging here for the past week or so concerning this match. To cut a long story short, the TV company who had the rights for this match went bust a couple of months back, and no other UK TV companies were either able or wanted to step into the breach. As a result, the company to whom the TV rights had reverted decided to screen the match live on the internet with no live TV coverage at all, and charged up to £12 (about $20) for the privilege.
Thankfully, England have already qualified for the World Cup, and so there was no burning need for most people to fork out a portion of their hard-earned dosh to view the game. But the thought of this being the way of the future is not at all appealing. I would certainly not appreciate paying £12 only to spend two hours watching a message say “please wait....buffering”. And, whilst having an option to watch sport online is a good thing, restricting live sport to only the internet is far from it. I hope this isn’t the start of a slippery slope. Anyhoo, the highlights of the game were screened on Saturday night by the BBC, but they had been prevented from advertising the fact that they would do so until after the end of the game (just two hours before their show started). Presumably this was to ensure that everybody who may be tempted to pay for the live coverage would do so and not just wait for the free-to-air highlights on the BBC a couple of hours later. So, it was only by pure luck that I saw the listing for the game on the Electronic Programme Guide as we were flicking through to see what was on.
As it happens, all of this fuss was for nothing as England had their goalkeeper sent-off after 15 minutes and went on to lose the game 1-0. Ho hum.