Saturday, March 12, 2022

Kate Hawkesby: RNZ/TVNZ merger a disaster waiting to happen


Sadly, no detail on the Government's RNZ/TVNZ merger but let's start with the very brutal truth – it’s going to be about as exciting as watching paint dry.  

It’s going to apparently ‘better reach those groups who aren't currently well served; such as our various ethnic communities and cultures,’ Faafoi said, so in other words, kissing a mainstream audience goodbye. 

Here’s the first problem – it’s going to operate under a charter. That’s been tried before – and failed – it was disastrous because it was invented by boffins all based on theory and PC BS, with no regard for the realities of the real world and what audiences actually want to see and hear. 


On paper, some sneering academics may jot down their wish list of ‘Kiwi’ content to ‘reflect us back to ourselves’.. but in all reality the only thing being reflected back is their own Twitterverse echo chamber. What they think we want to see, and what we actually want to see, are two very different things. 

Issue number two – it’ll have a - quote unquote- trustworthy news as a core service.  

Stating this shows just how far removed from reality the politicos have become. You want us to accept that a government run media entity, is going to have a ‘trustworthy’ news service? Are you serious? Is it as trustworthy as the blinkered left leaning media currently in the Government’s pocket?  

This on the very day an OIA revealed the Government – donkey deep in image consultants, PR lackeys, spin doctors and focus groups, actually gave “special briefings” to commentators who’d likely be talking to media about the Government’s Covid response. If you don’t know what I’m talking about here, look up Kate McNamara’s excellent piece in the Herald yesterday – it’s part of a three-part series she’s done on examples of government communication being bogged down in spin and murky disclosure. She’s got all her info through Official Information Act requests; it makes for eye-watering reading.  

Every time you saw media roll out Michael Baker or Sousxsie Wiles or Shaun Hendy, they and a bunch of others had all been ‘briefed ‘in advance by the Government, to give positive media coverage favourable to the Government’s narrative. Basically, to flatter the Government’s slow and clumsy Covid response, particularly around vaccine delays. 

So if you thought those commentators all sounded like Labour politicians when you heard them, you were right. They were part of the spin. 

So now this least open honest or transparent government ever, wants us to believe they’re going to run a ‘trustworthy’ news service? Put it on a Tui billboard, it’s farcical. 

Here’s the other insult – it’ll be partly funded by us the taxpayer. So invented by government, designed by government, partly funded by government with our tax payer dollars, but allegedly with complete editorial independence. And then there's the fact they're 'targeting youth'. Anything that says it wants to 'target young people' is not going to. Young people don't want to be targeted, they want to curate their own media sources from a variety of places, and this won't be it, it never has been. 

So, no wonder TV3’s lapping this announcement up and welcoming it, because although RNZ/TVNZ may be awash with government cash - winning the money that way, doesn't win you the audience. 

Kate Hawkesby is a political broadcaster on Newstalk ZB - her articles can be seen HERE.


Terry Morrissey said...

Why, at last the government is being open and transparent. They are going to invent their own Ministry of Propaganda paid for by the taxpayer.
And the corruption goes on and on.

DeeM said...

Why doesn't Faafoi just cut to the chase and rebrand it Labour News. Because that's exactly what it already is.
Anything the ex-TVNZ reporter is involved in turns into an unmitigated disaster - a bit like his political career!

National and ACT should state publicly that there will be no government funding of the media, as per Labour's current agenda which demands favourable and biased coverage. Funny that both parties are silent on it.

All politicians are the same deep down!

RRB said...

The BBC, ABC (Australian Broadcasting Corporation) and TVNZ AND Radio NZ have lots in common.
They are all controlled internally by left wing Marxists, all funded by taxpayers, and all used by governments as propaganda outlets.
They are all incapable of standing alone, are all overstaffed, all guilty of deliberately lying to their followers and for over 60 years no longer serve their initial purpose.
If their directors think differently the government should put this media up for sale - all NZ citizens will be better off.
They have earned the NZ public's distrust.