Tuesday, November 29, 2005

I like TBN-free zones

Appropos of the morality of "bling," evidently bling-hungry TBN wants to be everywhere:

"We don't just want to preach to the choir; we want to reach the unchurched," said Paul Crouch Jr. of Trinity Broadcast Network in Santa Ana. "The bottom line is that we want to be everywhere on cable."...

"A la carte
[allowing viewers to choose which channels they want to get without subscribing to a whole bunch of bundled channels] is a solution that will immediately address the issue of indecency on cable," said Tim Winters, executive director of the Los Angeles-based Parents Television Council.

The debate has created unusual bedfellows: religious broadcasters that want to keep getting their messages out, and free-speech advocates who are fearful that the unbundling of cable channels is being used by anti-indecency advocates as a tool against provocative shows. It also pits televangelists against their usual allies in trying to clean up language and sex on TV and radio.

Christian broadcasters, including such big names as Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwell, worry that changing the current system will cut into viewership. If that puts them on the opposite side of where they usually stand in the indecency debate, Crouch said, "so be it."

But Winters contends that religious broadcasters oppose more cable choice because they "are very fearful of losing any market share."

To preserve viewership, big religious broadcasters such as Trinity, which owns 33 TV stations, and Daystar, operator of stations in San Francisco and 44 other U.S. cities, are pushing the government to expand regulations requiring that cable operators carry local, over-the-air channels such as theirs.

It would be nice - if rates don't rise dramatically- to be able to get the International Channel, BBC World Service and the like.

It would suck if they had to carry TBN programming.

Better to leave things as they are then have more creepy televangelists.

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