Posts Tagged ‘Stratos TV’

Another stake through the heart of quality broadcasting…

1 January 2012 12 comments



Stratos TV has closed down… Gutted!

Aside from another damned good channel going down the gurglar, that leaves us bereft of good, alternative, thought-provoking shows like Citizen A, War on News, Al Jazeera, The Beatson Interview, et al…

Stratos CEO, Jim Blackman, posted this statement on their website,

It is with a heavy heart and a huge amount of regret, particularly at this time of the year, that I have to tell you that Stratos Television has ceased broadcast as of today.

The transmission costs coupled with the economic environment and general lack of support at all levels has meant that it simply could not survive.

We know the channel had a significant number of viewers across the country that were steadily growing. We are sorry to have let them down.

I want to pay tribute to the dedication of our staff, presenters, programme providers and contractors who have worked with such passion and pride over the years Stratos has been on air.

The contribution made by these folks has been outstanding. I am so proud of them and I am just sorry they won’t see it blossom into the vision we started out with.

For further information please refer to Please feel free to leave messages on the guest book on that page. Email contact can be made at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Auckland viewers will be able to access most of Stratos’ programming on the Triangle Television analogue service.

We will not be making any other statement at this time.

– J W Blackman, CEO


‘Tis a sad day for broadcasting in this country.

And it will be made sadder when TVNZ7 is canned by this current soulless, visionless, valueless, government and replaced by a shopping channel…

A shopping channel, for chrissakes!?

Once upon a time, my fellow New Zealanders, we had one television broadcaster with one channel; the NZBC,



One channel, and I recall that it used to screen a wide variety of programmes.

Even when we acquired a second channel in 1975, our public broadcasting system was a healthy mixture of entertainment, information, news, current affairs, sports,   and a growing reflection of our own cultural identity.

Our TV journalists fronted investigative-reporting current-affairs shows, such as ‘Gallery‘,   that held our elected representatives to account. Even Rob Muldoon was not above scrutiny, before the attentive eyes of New Zealanders glued to “The Box”.

Fast forward to 2011: we have umpteen tv channels, both free-to-air and pay-per-view; 24 hour broadcasting; high-tech services such as On Demand; satellite reporting of international events as they are happening; etc.

And yet people are turning away from television in droves. The constant criticism of our present-day television is that it offers a bland ‘diet’ of reality shows; infomercials; grim and ghastly crime “dramas”; and an endless stream of cooking programmes.

Welcome to television, 21st Century-style.

TVs 1, 2, 3, 4, et al, are the personification of Dumbing Down for the Dumbed Down. Only the advert-breaks offer any hint of original wit.TVNZ’s public charter was scrapped and it was effectively turned into a corporate cash-cow. If they could broadcast hard-core porn to make a buck; return a better dividend to this current cash-strapped government; and get away with it – they would.



Stratos TV, Maori TV,  and TVNZ7 are perhaps the last remaining bastions of intelligent tv for intelligent viewers, who crave something more substantial that a gory crime show that depicts the latest act of misogyny against women, or semi-clothed  “survivors” on some out-of-the-way spot on Planet Earth, or yet another cooking show with background music that promises  “action packed conflict”.

With Stratos gone from Freeview and TVNZ7 facing cancellation in June, viewers will be left with the bland for the brain-dead (Maori TV excepted?). With a myriad of channels to choose from, it appears to be a choice of crap, crap, and more crap. Anything of value will be either on pay-per-view Sky (such as the taxpayer owned-and-funded ‘Heartland TV‘ – now firmly  a part of Skytv) or ‘buried’ at ungodly hours which only moreporks and insomniacs will watch.

Stratos was a good attempt at presenting a credible  alternative to viewers. It may not have been perfect, and it may have needed some “tweaking” – but it offered something more tangible to viewers than chefs screaming blue-bloody-murder at each other.

It’s interesting to note that the NBR article on this matter – though short and basically a re-hash of Jim Blackman’s media release – has generated 116 comments posted by readers. Many of those comments being quite passionate in their views of Stratos’ demise, and the apalling state of our public and private television.

I sincerely hope that Stratos may rise again, perhaps in a new style, but with old, traditional values in broadcasting.

God knows we need it.



TVNZ Public Charter

Brian Edwards: The TVNZ Charter – a toothless tiger out of its misery

David Beatson: Stratos is Dead – Who’s Next?

NBR:  Plug pulled on Stratos Television

Where to now for NZ public broadcasting?

How the badly maimed BBC can stand up to parasitic Sky



Wishing Death Upon Him…

21 December 2011 4 comments



A week or two ago, I happened to catch a segment of    Lindsay Perigo’s TV blog,  “Perigo!“, on Stratos TV.  It is a Libertarian response to  Bomber Bradbury’s more left-wing “Citizen A” and “War on News”, on the same network.

Lindsay Perigo holds some views that are similar to mine – and others that are  diametrically opposed. It’s all part of the fascinating, grand political rainbow upon which we all move.

The episode in question was a repeat  of one broadcast by Stratos TV on  July 12, 2011, and was Perigo’s commemoration of the passing of Roger Kerr, Chief Executive of the Business Roundtable.

In part, Perigo said this,

When Roger’s illness was made public, there was an outpouring of that unique kind of hatred only the Left are capable of. One poster on one political blog said:

He is getting what he deserves.

Millions of ordinary Kiwis have suffered because of HIS greed and desire to turn us all into a nation of slaves.

Let’s see you try to take all your money with you now, you TRAITOR.

This is why God exists, BECAUSE there MUST be a hell for evil of the likes of Roger Kerr, Ruth Richardson, Jenny Shipley, Rodger Douglas, etc etc.

Actually, there is a place beyond hate, (which is how ordinary Germans felt about Jews), caused by years of hardship and suffering), and it is where my reaction to Roger Kerr, et al is, and I would quite happily send the Business Round Table to the gas chambers.

And their families too. Why? Because you MUST get the evil OUT of the gene pool.

That, ladies and gentlemen, is what we’re up against. Generations of New Zealanders conditioned to believe they shouldn’t have to pay for anything; the world via the government owes them a living and any expectation they should make any effort themselves is a cosmic impertinence. Government should be all-providing … and all-powerful. Not merely mediocrity but sub-mediocrity is the goal … and those who would beckon us to a higher path should be gassed and damned to hell for it. This envy-and-hate-ridden, mindless, soulless and soul-destroying mentality brought us to the brink of catastrophe in 1984 and is threatening to do so again. Roger Kerr has fought the good fight against it for decades.

Whatever they may have said about him, most of his detractors, who are legion, have grudgingly, respected him. In their hearts they know he’s right. The prosperity of all us depends on wealth creation, and wealth creation flourishes under conditions of small government, minimal regulation and low taxes, underpinned by personal freedom and responsibility. Hanker though they might for the former Soviet Union or East Germany, the present-day North Korea or Zimbabwe, the socialists know that if prosperity rather than equality of destitution is our aim, then the Roger Kerrs of this world are … on the money.” – Source

At about this point, I switched channel. Not because I disagreed with certain aspects of Perigo’s views – but because in my view he was exploiting Kerr’s death to “have a go” at the Left. Quite distasteful. Bad form.

And I say that as a left-winger who disagreed with much of Kerr’s views.

However, the comment made by the “left winger”, that Perigo quoted, was  somewhat… familiar. So I employed that great Oracle of the  21st Century – Google.

And I discovered from whence that derisory comment had emanated from. It  most certainly was  not a “Blog” – leftwing or otherwise.

It was from a messageboard belonging to “Trademe“.

Yes, folks, that great icon of  innovative, Kiwi capitalism; Trademe. Here’s the link to a website that has ‘captured’ and stored that particular Thread, entitled simply, “Roger Kerr“. The comment was actually made by an anonymous User, “321mat”, in Reply 2 – though it is visible only as a “reply-to-reply 2”, under a post made by Username “Silas”.

I remember the post from “321mat” quite clearly. I myself recall posting on that same Thread (which has not been ‘captured’ by this website, “”). I made my own views quite clear; one may disagree with Kerr’s political opinions, but to wish him dead was simply  unacceptable. By all means let us be passionate in our views – but not psychotically so.

Wishing Kerr dead was as obscene as Cameron Slater wishing the same on Winston Peters, as he did today,




I would add that I am no fan of Winston Peters. In fact, during the late 1990s I was a trenchant critic of him; his Party; and his fellow NZ First MPs. But I cannot recall ever wishing him to fall under a bus or similar fate. There is a vast gulf of difference between opposing the man’s ideas and actions – and desiring his demise.

Perigo might care to reflect that it is an unfortunate fact of life that fantatics exist in all religions;  in every political grouping; and throughout the left-right spectrum. This does not reduce the possible validity of a  philosophy – it simply means that disturbed individuals tend to gravitate to more extremist religious/political groupings.

That, Mr Perigo, is what we’re up against…

… extremists.

… and political commentators who use the death of a public figure to “have a go“.



Boardreader: Thread – Roger Kerr (originally published on Trademe)

Roger Kerr Special—Peritorial: Capitalism Derangement Syndrome