Alex Massie

Why can’t we have a better cable service?

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Woo hoo! The Rugby World Cup is almost upon us. Once upon a time - ie, during the inaugural tournament in 1987 - this would have meant that those of us exiled in the United States had almost no chance of following the tournament live. So, three cheers for the internets and satellite television and all the other accoutrements of the global telecommunications revolution. The world is a smaller, better place.

So why-oh-why-oh-why - and in the name of the wee man - are Versus showing games with a 24-48 hour delay? Seriously. The tournament kicks off with France vs Argentina on Friday, but it will be shown on Versus on Sunday. Have these people not heard of globalisation? That sort of tape delay* is close to being worse than not showing the games at all.

$20 a match to the local Irish pub or to (evil) Comcast on pay-per-view it is then. Either that or pay Setanta for a feed to a tiny screen on my laptop.

*Amazingly, even the USA games are being shown 24 hours late. Genius programming...

Written byAlex Massie

Alex Massie is Scotland Editor of The Spectator. He also writes a column for The Times and is a regular contributor to the Scottish Daily Mail, The Scotsman and other publications.

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