Playboy TV Goes Digital Down Under

Ed Palomar
LOS ANGELES — Playboy TV International (PTVI) is introducing its branded programming to two digital services in Australia. Two-hour blocks of Playboy TV shows started airing on FOXTEL Digital and New AUSTAR Digital’s 24-hour Adults Only Select Channels on Aug. 6.

Playboy TV Marketing Manager Anna Williams told XBiz, “We have been available on the Adults Only channel for about a year. But this is the first time Playboy TV will be on digital in Australia.”

PTVI Networks Director of Scheduling and Operations, Luigi Bordonaro, told XBiz that “7 Lives Xposed” and “Naughty Amateur Home Videos” kicked off the new service Down Under.

Bordonaro called “7 Lives Xposed” a “mock-umentary reality series” and likened it to an X-rated version of the CBS reality show “Big Brother.”

“7 Lives Xposed” stars adult actress Devinn Lane. “Naughty Amateur Home Videos” shows real couples in intimate settings, said Bordonaro.

“We premiere a two-hour block every Friday or Saturday at 8:30 or 10:30 p.m. made up of Playboy TV original programming.," Bordonaro said. "Each week, the Playboy block will air at least five out of the seven days on each of the two channels, but in a way so it’s available every day of the week — between the two.”

Bordonaro went on to say that each block is played four times in a day. Premiere blocks will play over a four week period to give the subscriber good opportunity to catch the programming.

In its second week on the Australian digital channels, PTVI will screen “Sex Court,” starring Julie Strain as a faux judge who presides over sexually-related cases and hands out erotic sentences. Also debuting Down Under are “Adult Stars Close Up” and “Sex Guides.” The latter is an adult version of “E! Wild On,” about red light districts, sex clubs, and the like at far-flung destinations.

Bordonaro said the PTVI programming on the digital channels are tiered as premier NVOD – or Near Video-on- Demand. “Basically, shows are being staggered so viewers don’t have to wait until the movie restarts. There’s an alternate channel they can turn on."

PTVI operates branded networks in France, Greece, Hong Kong, Israel, South Korea, New Zealand, Philippines, Poland, Japan, Scandinavia, Taiwan, and Turkey. Bordonaro told XBiz that screening American content for foreign audiences requires fine tuning.

He noted that it’s easier to program for Australia than most nations because it is an English-speaking country. “However, the ‘heat’ level is where we readjust our content first,” Bordonaro told XBiz.

“Australia is a bit softer than the usual U.S. adult program. We don’t want to break government regulations. If [the sexual activity] is too hot, we’ll bring it down to an acceptable level through editing,” stated Bordonaro.

According to PTVI, “The Adults Only Select Channels are part of the FOXTEL Box Office NVOD service which was launched in March as part of FOXTEL’s new digital cable and satellite platform, and in May on the New AUSTAR Digital service.”

Media mogul Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation Ltd owns 25 percent of FOXTEL. Murdoch is known to be a conservative, and his FOX News Channel has recently come under fire for having a purported pro-Republican bias in the documentary “Outfoxed: Rupert Murdoch’s War on Journalism.”

When asked about the fact that the liberal Hugh Hefner is doing business with the rightwing Murdoch, Bordonaro replied: “Oh god! I don’t even want to comment.”