What century are we living in? That is the question which springs to mind following yesterday’s press conference by the tabloid television network, the TV3 Group, where it was announced that its takeover of the ailing independent station, UTV Ireland, will include a relaunch of its new and existing broadcast channels. The network will rebrand UTV Ireland in 2017 as a women’s channel to be called Be3. The new “female orientated” station will feature soaps, melodramas, chat shows and children’s programming, while the network’s present main channel, TV3, will be for “grown ups“, focusing on news, sports, dramas and light entertainment. Even allowing for press hyperbole or truncated quotations, am I the only one to be surprised by the attitudes on display here? Do some men still view women as children in adult bodies? Are some females not grown-ups too?
From a report by The Journal:
“TV3 IS SET to relaunch UTV Ireland as a “female orientated” channel called Be3.
The announcement was made today at a media briefing in Dublin for the TV3 group’s plans for 2017.
In tandem with the launch of the new channel, the existing TV3 channels – the eponymous station and 3e – are to be given rebrands to position the channel as reaching to three specific demographics.
TV3 will be seen as the “grown ups channel” according to new Director of Programming Bill Malone (ex-RTÉ).
Current affairs programmes such as Tonight With Vincent Browne and Pat Kenny Tonight will likewise remain on the main channel.
Be3 meanwhile, as part of its “female focus” will be showing second viewings of the soaps, together with shows such as Midsomer Murders, Loose Women, and Benidorm.”
Whatever comes out of the promiscuous TV3 Group, now owned by the sprawling US cable company Liberty Global, will inevitably be aimed at the lowest common denominator in terms of broadcasting and viewership; trashy television imports from overseas with a few home-made talking-heads to fill out the schedule. The network has built up an unenviable reputation in Ireland for the seedy or sensationalist nature of its programming, placing it on a par with some of the infamous dumbed-down channels of Italy. Euros, not quality, is the bottom line in the local corporate headquarters in Ballymount. However there has to be some point at which we, the general public, and the broadcasting regulators go, seriously, what the fuck?