[sumo] Classic sumo
cholden at kappa-joe.com
Tue Jun 24 02:18:40 EDT 2008
On 6/23/08 8:36 PM, "Lon Howard" <itsulon at wavecable.com> wrote:
> If TV Japan dropped the ozumo
> coverage, it would cause hardly a ripple in their viewer-ship. It's
> included in their package for the same reason that it's still carried
> on NHK, and that's because there is a perceived obligation to
> continue promoting an awareness of the Japanese heritage. It
> wouldn't be a difficult decision for TV Japan to drop coverage of
> ozumo if they thought it was no longer a relevant reflection of that
> heritage. Since they're more profit-oriented than NHK, they might
> even drop it if they simply thought it could be replaced with
> something that would attract more viewers.
I really rather doubt this, as in my experience TV Japan has been very
responsive to American sumo fans' feedback. Not only did they expand their
coverage of the bashos from 90 minutes to a full 120 (in fairness, after
being called on NHK's original bulls**t excuse on this list), but in one
instance actually took the trouble to respond to me to let me know when they
would be broadcasting the NHK feature story on Kotooshou, after initially
saying they had no information on it.
Along the same lines, Dish Network, having interrupted the broadcast of one
of the bashos last year to do "regular network maintenance during off-
hours", apologized and passed the word up the line when I called them and
said it was tantamount to pre-empting the Super Bowl for sumo fans.
We may not have many options for televised coverage of Ozumo, but I truly
believe that TV Japan does both listen to and respond to feedback from their
subscribers. They may be the only game in town, but they do seem to realize
that a good percentage of their subscribers are American-born Japanophiles
who count on them to provide not only live NHK news-feeds and taigo-dramas,
but also expect proper coverage of Japan's national sport.
If TV Japan was really only interested in attracting more viewers, they
might well offer screenings of old Nikkatsu "pinku-eiga" during the
late-night hours, and probably pick up a fairly significant number of
subscribers of another sort.... ;-)
And if NHK was as responsive to viewer opinion as TV Japan is, more Japanese
viewers might be inclined to pay the bills they receive each month.
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