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thegeek3,985 posts since 1 Jan 2002
London London
While I don't have many memories of Setanta UK, I have heard many stories from people who worked there - who are now at BT Sport (via ESPN). There are quite a few behind-the-scenes folk who've worked at all three.

I also recently took a a call from someone who said he was at "Setanta MCR" - I assume he was at eir Sport, and old habits die hard.
rdd2,580 posts since 21 Jun 2001


The one thing that used to totally infuriate me about Setanta was they used to unencrypt their football build-up in an attempt to whip up more subscribers and would on numerous occasions invite you to subscribe, to the extent of for a while having a "SUBSCRIBE" DOG constantly on screen during the build-up. And if you'd already subscribed, it was incredibly irritating. Just looked like bad manners.


Old habits die hard. Eir Sport pulled that stunt tonight, showing the first 30 mins of the build up to Ireland v New Zealand on the more widely available Eir Sport 1 (though being less cynical that may have had to do with the finish time of the rugby league on Premier Sports).
MetalGearRex932 posts since 11 May 2016
London London
To revive this thread quite a bit - with the Sky basics off Virgin until November 2008, Setanta's news channel did gain traction for those who primarily used Virgin as their main platform. I recall living in Birmingham for a few months - and a few fast food shops using Virgin had to make do with Setanta Sports News because Sky Sports News was off Virgin at that time.

Even then, Sky would still trump up Setanta in regards to sports news - Sky Sports News had a much larger reach as the majority of its viewers were on Freeview and it was well established compared to the newcomer that was Setanta.
'What is the only planet capable of sustaining life?'
'Mars.'
Steve Williams1,859 posts since 1 Aug 2008
Even then, Sky would still trump up Setanta in regards to sports news - Sky Sports News had a much larger reach as the majority of its viewers were on Freeview and it was well established compared to the newcomer that was Setanta.


Setanta Sports News was also really bad, as well, it was really under-resourced and they used to repeat the few stories they had far too frequently. It was so blatantly rushed onto the screen. They also had next to no footage as well, and I remember at the time people suggesting that even without Sky Sports News, you got better coverage from the sports bulletins on BBC News and Sky News than from Setanta Sports News.

Their coverage of the death of Phil O'Donnell during an SPL match was absolutely awful, Sky Sports News and the news channels gave it almost rolling coverage, but Setanta, despite having exclusive rights to the SPL and presumably having reporters at the match, were hopeless, every time I switched over they were talking about the Premier League results. I know people slag off Sky Sports News for endlessly promoting Sky Sports content but they are at least prepared to talk about breaking news in stuff they don' have the rights to. Setanta were just using it for brand building purposes.
flaziola1,431 posts since 19 Jun 2007
Slightly related question, Setanta had this puppet show by Mario Rosenstock called "I'm on Setanta Sports" it then moved to BBC Three but I can't remember what it was renamed as.
gonzo220 posts since 8 Mar 2009
Slightly related question, Setanta had this puppet show by Mario Rosenstock called "I'm on Setanta Sports" it then moved to BBC Three but I can't remember what it was renamed as.


I remember that! Wasn't it Special 1 TV and it had a blatant rip off of the setanta logo?
Gonzo, really needs a new signature.
MetalGearRex932 posts since 11 May 2016
London London
I recall living in Birmingham for a few months - and a few fast food shops using Virgin had to make do with Setanta Sports News because Sky Sports News was off Virgin at that time.


Even though they could have got SSN off Freeview...

My sentiments exactly. It wasn't hard to get a cheap box and access Sky Sports News on it. In retrospect, Sky Sports News' success can be credited for its inclusion on Freeview. The same goes for channels such as E4, Dave, Challenge and countless other channels that were once residing on Pay TV territory.
Setanta News didn't have that option, aside from being woefully inferior to the Sky offering.
'What is the only planet capable of sustaining life?'
'Mars.'
derek500565 posts since 10 Dec 2003
Westcountry Points West


Even then, Sky would still trump up Setanta in regards to sports news - Sky Sports News had a much larger reach as the majority of its viewers were on Freeview and it was well established compared to the newcomer that was Setanta.


BARB reach figures for its final quarter on Freeview (Q2 2010) were 17.484m.

Q4 2010 its first as pay only were 12.963m. So the majority of viewers were pay.