Pay but no view for int’l viewers of Soca Monarch
By Corey Connelly Sunday, February 14 2010
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BEAUTY BOUNCE: This beauty had a wail of a time at the Soca Monarch competition on Friday Night. ...
Foreign Internet users tuning in to the International Soca Monarch finals at the Queen’s Park Oval in Port-of-Spain on Friday night received a rude awakening after realising they were unable to view the much-anticipated competition.
In fact, several peeved customers yesterday posted comments on the popular FaceBook site, chastising the Caribbean New Media Group (CNMG) which offered the packages for four major Carnival shows — Soca Monarch, Panorama, Dimanche Gras and Parade of the Bands — at a total cost of US$80 or US$19.95 per event.
The State-owned CNMG had bought out the rights for the four shows and was responsible for streaming the Soca Monarch competition live.
“This is bogus business... I pay and I could not see, could not even link up to the site. And everyone who ent pay was on the site too....what’s up with that?”Cleve Johnson wrote on ctntworld.com
Johnson said those who had purchased the packages deserved an explanation.
“If yuh equipment can’t handle many connections, stop taking people money,” he said.
While some customers complained that the site had crashed, others said the programme was defective.
“It keep stickin’,”said Rheba Escalera.
Another female customer said the package was just too expensive.
“You say you want to help to cover the cost and bring in more viewers.....It’s not like you all are charging a reasonable price. You are charging $80 for the entire thing,” she said.
Kenny Phillips, chief executive officer of WAC Radio (90.1FM), had expressed an interest in broadcasting the event.
Phillips, whose company has been in existence for the past five years, complained that he was shot down by CNMG and even threatened with legal action if he failed to comply with the company’s position.
“They said I would be served with an injunction if I went ahead with the radio broadcast,” he said.
Phillips said he had done live audio and video for the Kaisorama show on Thursday and was willing and ready to broadcast the Soca Monarch competition.
“CNMG has failed miserably and this is reflecting badly on the international scene. I mean, this is a State-owned company and they are doing that amount of stupidness,”an irate Phillips added.
CNMG had recently been granted exclusive broadcast rights for Carnival, a move which had been condemned by the National Carnival Development Foundation (NCDF).
Neither Culture Minister Marlene Mc Donald nor officials from CNMG could be reached for comment yesterday.