Question of the week:does Sky Arts make Sky less evil?

So a little while ago, I asked if Sky was evil. Now, there is one obvious possible exception to this question: Sky Arts. If you’re the kind of person who wonders where all the opera, dance and highbrow music programmes have gone to; if you want to know which UK broadcaster would show In Treatment; if you want to know who covers events like The Theatre Festival, has documentaries on the likes of the Birmingham Royal Ballet; and shows concerts by bands such as Queen and Thin Lizzy, it turns out Sky Arts 1 and 2 (also available in HD) are the places to go. Not even the Beeb is doing much of that, and it’ll only cost you a quid a month on top of your basic Sky subscription to get them, if you don’t already have the Style & Culture Pack.

So this week’s question is:

Does Sky Arts redeem Sky? Does it make Sky “not evil”? Or does the fact it’s a separate channel mean that all the other channels are lowbrown and it’s merely a beard that Sky can point to whenever anyone accuses it of being bereft of cultural value?

As always, leave a comment with your answer or a link to your answer on your own blog




  • I’d quibble over whether Sky itself is evil. It may be that many people consider News International evil – but Sky != News International (at the moment).
    In terms of channels offerings, it’s no more ‘evil’ than, say, Freeview – after all, on Sky, you can access Russian/French/Iranian TV channels. In an ideal world you’d have an open transmission/TV Guide, but that’s about as evil as it gets. It’s no more evil than Apple.
    In terms of the content of said channels, it’s probably Sky One (ironically) that needs looking after. I’ve seen programmes on Sky Arts/News that I’ve thought I’d want to watch – aside from Pineapple Dance Studios, Sky One lacks that killer programme that makes me want to watch the channel.

  • SK

    To be honest, I’m actually quite grateful to Sky for taking all the football off the basic channels, so that people who want to watch it can pay to do so, and it doesn’t clutter up the schedules or take money away from other areas of the BBC for those of us who aren’t interested in it.
    It annoys me that if I want to watch the Oscars I have to shell out for a month’s Sky Movies subscription, though. Preferred it when that was on BBC1. But again, it doesn’t seem unreasonable that if you want something specific you have to pay for it (showing my age a bit there, aren’t I?).

  • Not evil – but probably beard-like.
    Then again I’m one of those resistant to paying a sub for TV full-stop. Virgin freeview comes with the phone and broadband and though I know it probably isn’t the best/better than Sky (nor cheaper), I still object to putting more money into Murdoch’s conglomerate porkies.