Pattaya Mail turns 12



Pattaya Mail Web

Vol. XIV No. 28
Friday July 14 - July 20, 2006

Home
AutoMania
Books-Music
Business News
Columns
Community Happenings
Dining Out & Entertainment
Features
Kids Corner
Letters
News
Our Community
Shopping
Sports
Travel
Who's who
WOMBANIA

Sophon TV-Guide
Clubs in Pattaya
Current Movies in Pattaya's Cinemas

Classifieds

Search
All Back Issues

Pattaya Mail
About Us
Subscribe
Advertising Rates

Updated every Friday
by Saichon Paewsoongnern

 

 

LETTERS
HEADLINES [click on headline to view story]:

A mirror of the West? perish the thought!

Follow the leader

Charm “offensive”?

Outside charge

Disappearing ‘world’

Explanations about Star World and A1 Channels

A mirror of the West? perish the thought!

Dear Pattaya Mail
The Anti Federalist Eagle who thinks he has a solution for Thailand’s attitude towards international affiliations is being far too naive. That’s the problem with most of the USA’s foreign policy. They should stop thinking the rest of the world won’t pay a price for doing things their own way.
In the UK I thought we learned that lesson a long time ago. Perhaps we have not, but we should... Chill out Eagle use your ‘tools’.
And as for the comment on education: The US of A has never really been on top of that. It has about 250 million people and 100 million of them don’t get the same quality of education they could get in Thailand - where the students respect the teachers and the society they live in.
Most of the USA is driven by religious bigotry or economic inequality, or both. Yes it’s rich overall but it doesn’t provide a model for any nation to follow. Every time I go there I think it will be OK when its finished... same as Thailand.
Thais will continue to develop in their own way and at their own speed. The problems are difficult but in the end Thai and Buddhist values will produce a society much better than we may expect. We don’t want to turn them into a mirror of the West.
I am an avid supporter of the USA - in the UK we owe that country a great debt. But it is not always right.
Peter (UK)


Follow the leader

Dear Sir,
Further to Robert Patnicroft’s letter (Pattaya Mail Fri., July 7) referring to the recent statement by Chamlong Sukprom, President of Pattaya Transport Co-operative, in which he states that tourists are charged more on Baht buses because their currency’s are more valuable. I too was left gasping in amazement (not disbelief - see Pattaya bureaucracy). It seems incredible, especially following the constant public debate on such an emotive issue, that the top guy could have such an obviously biased and unbalanced view.
Are baht bus drivers to be individually responsible for summarily deciding which farang, whether he be Asian, European, African, or Arab, has a more valuable currency? Would they take into account those on a hard earned trip of a lifetime ... the elderly, the low waged, large families (several kids), etc. etc? Perhaps he thinks tourists (foreigners) should also pay more in Thai restaurants and cinemas - as well as tourist attractions.
However, come to think about it, perhaps we shouldn’t be so harsh in our criticism of Mr Sukprom. You may recall a quote from PM Thaksin during the early part of his first term in office, in which he stated that it was the duty/responsibility of all Thais to take as much as they could (money) from all foreign visitors.
I also recall Thai Airlines offering cheap flights to the north during the rainy season for Thai citizens - only. So considering all this, Mr Sukprom is only following the advice of Mr Thaksin and taking his lead from big business operators!
James Bannister


Charm “offensive”?

Dear Mailbag
Like so many other visitors I experience depression in Pattaya. It usually occurs on my second or third day when I finally realize that I have to go back home. I have experienced many feelings in Pattaya but I have never experienced the level of anger and disdain that “Charm-Analyst” feels for the Baht buses.
It was nice that “Charm” was kind enough to write my name correctly. It would have been nicer if he/she had read my letter a little more carefully. Just the idea of someone defending the Baht buses so enraged them over their morning coffee, (or is it tea?) that they quickly fired off a letter to respond to the charm I see in all things Thai.
The Baht buses, Tuk-Tuks, air con meter taxis are all charming to me and believe me I don’t charm easily. I don’t know what you problem is “Charm” but if you are living in Pattaya then why don’t you get a car or a scooter or some other mode of transportation and quit your complaining.
I wrote that people who move to Pattaya should then do their best to make it like home. I didn’t compare it as you stated in your letter. That is a far reached comparison that I would never make. If you are going to complain then get your facts straight and have the courage to sign your own name (“Charmed”?).
Why all the anger towards the Baht buses anyway? Did you have to pay an extra 50 Baht one time? Have you seen the drivers of the “cheap Japanese pick-ups”? Driving with their wives and kids in the cab beside them. What kind of money do you think they are making? They like all the other drivers and workers and vendors are doing their best to make a living. We should be grateful for the small amount that we pay them for their services.
Patrick Lane


Outside charge

Dear Pattaya Mail
It has long been my belief that the way to counter the ever-increasing congestion within the City centre is to introduce a charge for non-residents to bring their vehicles into the area bounded by North and South Roads, Beach Road and Sukhumvit Highway. A permit costing 500 baht per week would probably do the trick.
In London the introduction of a fee to enter the City has resulted in freeing the roads, lowering pollution and reducing accidents. Incidentally, I heartily agree with a previous writer who requested Soi Diana to be made one-way. If ever a soi needed to be one-way it is that one! Even pedestrians are log-jammed at times!
Yours faithfully,
Michael Nightingale
(suffering pedestrian)


Disappearing ‘world’

Dear Pattaya Mail
What has happened to Starworld?
After a few minutes of fruitless searching on my TV - I find its gone, disappeared, without trace?
Sophon Cable has kept me amused for the length of time I have been living in this city but I was shocked to find last Friday that they have taken Starworld off the air along with A1, (without any warning). Apart from the Beeb and Eurosport they were the most watched channels in my house. I have to say a lot of my friends watch this station as well, as they have had classic English shows on it like “Little Britain” and “Coupling”, not to mention “Parky”.
Are Sophon going to replace it with something similar? Or are we English ‘farangs’ just going to have to watch even more movies with dodgy soundtracks? This must be the most important news to hit Pattaya since the ‘new’ bus service.
Yours - Clive (see below)


Explanations about Star World and A1 Channels

ATTN: Subscribers
In answer to Sophon Cable TV and Communications Pattaya subscribers’ enquiries about the disappearance of Star World Channel and A1 Channel from the schedules, the company wishes to provide the following explanation:
The content provider of Star World and A1 sells the channels and with that the copyrights to televise in the localities where the cable TV companies broadcast, in this case Sophon TV in Pattaya and other cable TV stations in other areas. Only 43 local cable TV companies televised said channels and in actual fact only 79 cable TV companies are actually registered with the Thai Public Relations Department, while 400 are registered with the Cable TV Association of Thailand and this does not include the more than 300 unregistered cable TV companies.
The above issues have caused the content provider of Star World and A1 to be unable to increase viewer statistics and market figures and in some cases the numbers have fallen for the simple reason that some parts of Thailand do not have a foreign resident community and the programs are not popular with the cable TV subscribers in those areas. Therefore, Sophon Cable TV management has had no other choice but to lessen the expense of buying from the content provider of Star World and A1.
As an example of the reasoning, Kamphaeng Phech, Pichit, Singburi, Angthong etc cannot compare with the likes of Pattaya, Had Yai or Chiang Mai. Business is business and the content provider has to earn as much as possible to distribute its content and help with the survival of the business.
To this end it is forced to look to new major buyers with the buying power and with the market to sell the content to the local cable TV companies. This buying power creates a monopoly and everyone knows which cable TV company has such buying power, as there is only one in Thailand that is able to reach all markets throughout the country.
Therefore, Sophon Cable TV Pattaya and other local cable TV providers are all suffering the same problem of being monopolized from access to good programming, as we do not have the buying power. To put it simply if you want the content you have to pay as much as the big players. If a cable TV company has to pay 10 million baht a month for copyrights for Star World and A1, Sophon Cable TV has to pay the same sum, which is impossible when it only charges 350-400 baht for its service. Subscribers who wish to view Star World and A1 will have to subscribe to other cable TV companies and will also be paying much higher subscriptions than they currently pay for Sophon Cable TV in Pattaya. In fact the monthly subscription fees could be as much as what is paid to Sophon Cable TV over a six month period. However, Sophon Cable TV in future will have to consider the programs it broadcasts in order to gain the greatest benefit for its subscribers.
Yours Sincerely,
Attasit Chuo Chu-chart (General Manager - Sophon Cable TV)



News | Business | Features | Columns | Mail Bag | Sports | Auto Mania
Our Children | Travel | Our Community | Dining Out & Entertainment
Social Scene | Classifieds | Community Happenings | Books Music Movies
Clubs in Pattaya | Sports Round-Up


E-mail: [email protected]
Pattaya Mail Publishing Co.Ltd.
62/284-286 Thepprasit Road, (Between Soi 6 & 8) Moo 12, Pattaya City
T. Nongprue, A. Banglamung,
Chonburi 20150 Thailand
Tel.66-38 411 240-1, 413 240-1, Fax:66-38 427 596

Copyright © 2004 Pattaya Mail. All rights reserved.
This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Letters published in the Mailbag of Pattaya Mail
are also on our website.

It is noticed that the letters herein in no way reflect the opinions of the editor or writers for Pattaya Mail, but are unsolicited letters from our readers, expressing their own opinions. No anonymous letters or those without genuine addresses are printed, and, whilst we do not object to the use of a nom de plume, preference will be given to those signed.