New Hong Kong television licences must not be sold cheap

The current licences for ATV and TVB will expire in 2015.

The rags-to-riches media tycoon Roy Thomson famously described the ownership of an ITV franchise in Britain as a "licence to print money". I would say his joy at his profits was evidence that a Whitehall bureaucrat got it wrong and sold his country's patrimony cheap.


Thursday, 13 June, 2013, 6:26am 4 comments

New free-to-air TV licences will bring variety to viewing

Lawmakers Ann Chiang Lai-wan and Emily Lau Wai-hing appear on talk show. More channels can allow for better quality political debate. Photo: David Wong

Gone were those days when viewers in the Pearl River Delta defied officials by setting up special antennae to receive TV from this side of the border. Meanwhile, back in Hong Kong, during the past week or so, speculation spread that the Executive Council had finally come to a consensus about handing out new free-to-air TV licences. 

27 May 2013 - 4:22am

Free World Cup broadcasts good news for soccer fans

TVB's general manager of broadcasting Cheong Shin-keong (right) announces '2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil' broadcasting rights in a press conference. Photo: Felix Wong

For the first time in 16 years, Hong Kong's soccer fans will be able to see the important games of the World Cup tournament free of charge. TVB's winning of the broadcasting rights and its decision to show 22 of the 64 games, the opener, both semi-finals and final among them, on its free-to-air channels, is a sure-fire crowd-pleaser. Avid soccer fans would like to see each and every goal without having to pay, as they did in 1998. But the broadcaster claims it is financially constrained. Although not the perfect outcome, it is at least an improvement.

26 May 2013 - 4:35am

TVB to screen 22 World Cup 2014 matches for free

TVB to screen 22 World Cup 2014 matches for free

Soccer fans in Hong Kong will be able to watch 22 matches of the 2014 World Cup in Brazil free of charge after TVB won broadcasting rights for the tournament for the first time in 16 years.

23 May 2013 - 4:40am 1 comment

Non-Chinese can succeed in local entertainment industry, says actress

Actress Corinna Chamberlain. Photo: Edward Wong

While Hong Kong performers often look West to further their careers, the reverse is rare. But there have recently been a few Western entertainers who have carved out niches in local show business – in Chinese.

22 May 2013 - 10:06am

TVB's judicial challenge over licences rejected

TVB City in Tseung Kwan O. Photo: Sam Tsang

A court has dismissed TVB's application for a judicial review of a government agency's decision to recommend the granting of new free-to-air television licences, saying that it will not review intermediate steps of the administration's decision-making process.

14 May 2013 - 5:27am

Letters to the Editor, April 20, 2013

Banks must now be called to account. Photo: Bloomberg

I watched the US Senate hearings into the JPMorgan US$6.2 billion loss on credit derivatives. Banks justify their huge bonuses, saying that they are needed to attract talent. If the collection of mumbling, fumbling, buck-passing individuals who testified are the best talent available, it is not surprising that the banks are in such a mess.

20 Apr 2013 - 3:25am

TVB Pearl to replay Rugby Sevens final after cutting live coverage

TVB Pearl to replay Rugby Sevens final after cutting live coverage

The Hong Kong Rugby Sevens final will be broadcast on local television again - but only because TVB Pearl cut last month's decider after it overran its live coverage, causing viewers to miss the final dramatic minutes of the game.

6 Apr 2013 - 3:51am 2 comments

Letters to the Editor, April 3, 2013

Statistics needed on Sai Kung break-ins. Photo: Edward Wong

My family thoroughly enjoyed our Easter weekend excursion along the new Central waterfront promenade. What a shame that we were chased by three security officials who instructed my children that they were not allowed to ride their tricycles along the walkway.

3 Apr 2013 - 3:29am 3 comments

Letters to the Editor, April 2, 2013

Cars double parked in a street in Central. Photo: David Wong

The description in Jose Chan's letter ("Policyholders worse off with proposed insurance authority", March 28) distorts our proposals. One of the purposes of establishing the new authority is to enhance protection of policyholders.

2 Apr 2013 - 3:45am 15 comments

A Bad Week for … , March 31, 2013

Domestic helpers lost their longstanding battle for the same residency rights as other foreign workers.

The men and (mostly) women who underpin Hong Kong's households lost their longstanding battle for the same residency rights as other foreign workers. 

31 Mar 2013 - 2:08am

Letters to the Editor, March 30, 2013

England team must return to white strip. Photo: Xinhua

As a 26-year resident of the city, I have mainly always been proud of Hong Kong. On Monday I felt shame, wondering whether I could even look at a domestic helper straight in the face, feeling that I and my fellow Hongkongers had somehow let them down.

30 Mar 2013 - 3:34am 6 comments

Letters to the Editor, March 29, 2013

An electric bike on a road in Hangzhou. Photo: NYT

How sad that police chief superintendent Eddie Wong Kwok-wai, of the police public relations branch, should think it a fruitful use of police time to chase otherwise law-abiding citizens who ride electric bicycles ("Police cracking down on illegal bikes, tricycles", March 23).

29 Mar 2013 - 5:02am 2 comments

Must the court step in? asks judge over TVB's judicial review plea

Photo: Nora Tam

A judge asked yesterday why he should accede to TVB's request to intervene in ongoing government deliberations on the issuance of new licences for free-television stations.

28 Mar 2013 - 10:01am 1 comment

Letters to the Editor, March 26, 2013

Western New Territories has rail links. Photo: David Wong

The government appears to have a blind spot. It should look at the map of Hong Kong and see that 90 per cent of our land resources of nearly 110,000 hectares are in the New Territories, most of which remain undeveloped. Therefore, there is no need to deplete our precious sea resources and damage our beautiful coastline by reclamation.

26 Mar 2013 - 3:29am 3 comments