The news that the next America's Cup will be broadcast free to air by TVNZ will be welcomed by many viewers, though free to air does not mean free. It means advertising will pay for the telecasts and viewers will pay, not with a subscription but with time, as advertisers demand some of their attention. That is a form of payment some people have always preferred to a Sky subscription which they refuse to pay.
So, if nothing else, the broadcasting rights will ensure everyone in this country can see Emirates Team New Zealand try to defend the Cup in 2021. What of other countries?
"I think we're suffering a little bit that over recent cups it hasn't been all over the world as Kiwis had been led to believe, because it has been pay to air and often doesn't go anywhere," ETNZ boss Grant Dalton said.
That is true. The world has not been watching as we like to suppose when public money is provided.
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The truth is, the America's Cup has become New Zealand's cup in more ways than Peter Montgomery meant at the climax of his commentary on our first triumphant quest. Nearly 20 years on, we need to do more to promote the event worldwide. With exclusive television rights, TVNZ now has an interest in getting maximum value for its money.
Longer races and the return to monohulls could restore yachting's traditional appeal, and New Zealand visual presentation technology makes it easy to follow. Let's hope TVNZ's production is up the challenge.