Nyah nyah! We've already got one.
I had access to Pridevision here for about three or four months (about this time last year) because when they started up, it was free. Since then, they've been shafted by most of the cable and satellite distributors in Canada.
Lemme ramble a bit.
When Pridevision started up last year, there were about 50 other digital cable and satellite channels that started at the same time. Cable and satellite companies bundled most of the channels together in packages that would likely interest people (movie channels were all put into the same package, sports channels, etc.). But when the game stopped, one channel was left without partners - Pridevision. So, while I can purchase a package of 5 new sports-related channels from my satellite operator for about 5 or 6 extra dollars a month, Pridevision is on its own, and for some reason it alone costs $7.95/month.
Now, from what I saw, Pridevision is a nice little endeavour that I'd be happy to support (there's some programming on there that I would watch). However, no single channel is worth $7.95/month to me.
Sounds to me, Tim, as though you'd be reasonably happy with the programming that they offer on Pridevision. There are no sitcoms (least there weren't when I had access to it). The schedule was mostly filled with dramas, lifestyle shows that seemed to be hosted by gay people and, after midnight, movies that most people wouldn't want their children to see.
When it first showed up on the scene, I had some of the same concerns you did, about ghetto-ization of gay culture. Now that the cable and satellite companies have screwed over Pridevision my concerns are greater than ever before.
I read in the paper a month or two ago, that Pridevision had a miniscule subscriber base, because of all of this and that they had laid off about 2/3 of the staff. They've halted all original programming (of which there was a surprisingly large amount, originally) until they can get their finances in order. Frankly, things look very bleak for the channel, and I'd be very surprised if it survived another two years.
As one last note, there is one other channel in Canada which goes out of its way to draw gay viewers, Showcase. Showcase is around for the long-haul, and it is already well-established and profitable. It is by no means exclusively gay, but they do a lot of out reach to Canada's gay communities, and they feature a fair bit of gay-friendly programming.
Edited to add: you can see at the Pridevision web site that it claims to only have 20,000 subscribers right now. They're on a big subscription push to get to 50,000. If it sounds like peanuts to you, that's because it is, even in the microscopic Canadian TV universe.
"Will you help him change the world? Can you dig it?"
"Yes I can!"
-Chicago, Saturday in the Park (Yeah, yeah. Shut up.)
[This message has been edited by Dzuunmod (edited 12-14-2002).]