Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: A cog in the Mediaworks machine

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  • Alfie,

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    While austerity reigns over at Mediaworks, somebody decided they could just about afford a shiny new logo. Julie Christie's experience on the flag panel has proved that you don't need designers any longer, so they ended up with this!

    While the symbolism is still a mystery, I can see an obvious reference to the business unravelling. Other interpretations welcomed.

    At least we can be thankful that they didn't steal the design from a Weetbix packet.

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1440 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Alfie,

    the business unravelling

    and they lose The Simpsons and Family Guy to TVNZ.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19745 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Alfie,

    While the symbolism is still a mystery

    ideologically more blue than red? :)

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19745 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel, in reply to Alfie,

    Logos complex...

    While the symbolism is still a mystery

    looks like a double screw to me
    or perhaps after DNA, Mince...
    they have lost the beat - a flatline should soon appear...

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7953 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Ian Dalziel,

    a double screw

    Weldon, Christie

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19745 posts Report Reply

  • Alfie,

    Steve Braunias sums up the last year of his Secret Diary series with a special mention for NZ's least competent TV exec.

    But I always felt at ease with one particular character. He was so ridiculous that it was a breeze to move him around the page. I devoted five diaries to his doings, or undoings - Mark Weldon, the TV3 supremo who axed Campbell Live and 3D, and replaced the shows with a gossip site nobody looks at.

    Villain, obviously; wrecker, plainly; but like Key, he was impossible to take seriously, with his terrible ideas and his brazen sale of his own awful Terra Sancta wine to TV3. He'll exit the stage of public life one day. The soundtrack will be one long, loud raspberry; I'm just getting in early.

    Well said, that man.

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1440 posts Report Reply

  • Alfie,

    Matt Nippert has been sifting through Mediaworks' accounts, searching for the motivation behind Oaktree's $17m pre-christmas capital investment in the company. And he found the answer.

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1440 posts Report Reply

  • Alfie,

    David Farrier joins the list of high-profile staff departing TV3. Or as Stuff so eloquently puts it, “David Farrier is leaving leaving TV3.”

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1440 posts Report Reply

  • Alfie,

    It's official... 3News will be killed off at the end of this month to be replaced by Newshub Live with a RadioLIVE connection. Mike and Hillary remain as anchors.

    And Carolyn Robinson joins the queue of TV3 staff jumping ship, ostensibly to 'spend more time with her family'.

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1440 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel, in reply to Alfie,

    It’s official… 3News will be killed off at the end of this month to be replaced by....

    ... a live shot of a newspaper with the pages being turned every ten minutes.

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7953 posts Report Reply

  • bob daktari,

    is it odd that the reaction (online and so far) to mediaworks announcement of a cross platform newshub and show is pretty much the exact opposite to Checkpoint on RNZ - both organisations are doing similar things (for different commercial reasons)

    one we applaud cause JC and the other we mock cause Weldon

    auckland • Since Dec 2006 • 540 posts Report Reply

  • linger, in reply to bob daktari,

    one we applaud cause JC and the other we mock cause Weldon

    more accurately, 'cause there's no reason to expect it to be well done.

    Tokyo • Since Apr 2007 • 1944 posts Report Reply

  • Alfie, in reply to bob daktari,

    one we applaud cause JC and the other we mock cause Weldon

    Yes and no. RNZ deserves our praise because it's still a credible news organisation and this country's only remaining public broadcaster. Mediaworks on the other hand appear to be shredding their news reputation faster than a magic bullet. Matt Nippert reckons the integrated NewsHub presents difficulties for Oaktree.

    From a strategic standpoint today's announcement represents an all-or-nothing play by Weldon and his vulture fund shareholder.

    Oaktree Capital are not in the business of being long-term broadcasters. The firm instead operates by acquiring distressed businesses in order to quickly engineer a turnaround and on-selling them for a profit. This entire process is completed in a typically short term.

    Combining successful radio assets with a lame-duck TV station makes the whole package much less marketable.

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1440 posts Report Reply

  • bob daktari, in reply to Alfie,

    conversely adding to the pool of news talent for your profitable radio assets,which can still be broken off for sale, rationalising staff and the like could be a clever business move - if it saves overheads

    both mediums face the same dilemma, having a model based on appointment viewing/listenership at a time when people are rapidly moving to on demand/streaming/when you want it media - you either try to combat that with quality (RNZ) or economise (mediaworks)

    personally the multiplatform thing I find a complete yawnfest, seems like a solution for a problem no one was having

    auckland • Since Dec 2006 • 540 posts Report Reply

  • Alfie,

    Last year Kim Hill had an excellent interview with Piv Bernth, head of drama for Danish TV. Denmark's population is around 5.6m, not a lot bigger than our own. Households there pay a broadcasting fee of around $400 a year and receive eight commercial-free TV channels and the same number of ad-free radio stations.

    Bernth mentioned that Danes have "a lot of programmes analysing the news". If nothing else, that points out that it's not TV audiences around the world who are becoming dumber and demanding entertainment in place of news. Rather that's a local phenomenon driven by our two major TV broadcasters, with the tacit support of those in power who prefer to avoid any difficult questions.

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1440 posts Report Reply

  • bob daktari,

    the dumbing of commercial news isn't however a uniquely NZ thing, our broadcasters follow global trends - its a commercial media market thing - something the Danes have avoided I guess (lucky sods)

    RNZ's listenership figures more than prove that people do crave and subscribe to insightful and intelligent broadcasting, that doesn't negate the changing manner in which we consume media, especially in a global context nor the business realities faced by media companies

    auckland • Since Dec 2006 • 540 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to bob daktari,

    lucky sods

    "Households there pay a broadcasting fee of around $400 a year"

    Sounds like quite a deliberate choice to me. Can anyone recall the public response to NZ's old broadcasting fee being ditched?

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19745 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Alfie,

    an excellent interview

    twas

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19745 posts Report Reply

  • Hilary Stace,

    I was one of those pretty cross about the end of the broadcasting fee. It was minimal at a couple of hundred dollars a year (much, much less than a Sky subscription of today) and was a small price to pay for good public broadcasting. It came in with the neoliberal sweep of Rogernomics. Roger Douglas had long had an interest in liberalising broadcasting. Sense of doom subsequently justified.

    Wgtn • Since Jun 2008 • 3227 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Hilary Stace,

    much, much less than a Sky subscription

    Exactly. Can't believe how many people don't get that.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19745 posts Report Reply

  • izogi, in reply to Sacha,

    Exactly. Can’t believe how many people don’t get that.

    I’m still not clear on what some people think they’re paying for with Sky. I looked at everything my inlaws recorded on their MySky for later viewing, and virtually all of it is stuff that’s broadcast on the Freeview channels! We record the same stuff with a commodotised DVR, but even that’s starting to become obsolete with various OnDemand services with all significant free channels except for Sky’s own Prime.

    I think the nieces and nephews turn up sometimes and watch Nickelodeon and they sometimes watch the sport, but it’s no wonder that Sky’s starting to struggle to compete with many of the alternatives now becoming available. Weirdly, Sky subscribers seem to pay for everyone to not have sport on TV for free so that they can have it whilst paying for it. But maybe the sports get more money from it, or something, when they get a fraction of Sky's takings. Is it worth it?

    Wellington • Since Jan 2007 • 1142 posts Report Reply

  • bob daktari, in reply to Sacha,

    While the fee was abolished - which was a logical step given that the fee paid for radio as well as TV but was only applied to homes with television Sets

    We still pay for the same things and more that used to be covered by the fee directly from taxes was a much easier and more equitable solution I'd suggest, especially if we consider how we consume media now (assuming it would still be attached to a type of device or mode of broadcast)

    We can argue about the ways our taxes are used in media and broadcasting and the funding decisions agencies make but to think we'd have a better system or quality of content generation with a broadcasting fee is a bit silly

    auckland • Since Dec 2006 • 540 posts Report Reply

  • Alfie,

    TV3 is ditching more experienced journos. Jeff Hampton and Phil Corkery are both 'leaving' the company next week. I've worked with both men and they're excellent newshounds.

    Phil has been the ChCh bureau chief for years. He ran a tight little newsroom, coached new journos and generally held the place together. He's one of the better broadcasters I've had the privilege of working alongside.

    But I suppose in TV3's eyes trainee journos straight out of broadcasting school cost a lot less, and they'll be hoping that the audience is dumbed down enough not to notice that 3News is becoming fluffier and more entertainment-based by the day.

    The rot continues.

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1440 posts Report Reply

  • Alfie,

    TRP at the Standard has penned a satirical piece called
    Stay Classy: TV3’s Newshrub

    TV3 have announced they are getting out of the news business and getting into cross platform media hotdesking across the continuum of diminishing eyeballs. Welcome to TV3 Newshrub, the place where no news is good news!

    Worth a read.

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1440 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca, in reply to Alfie,

    But I suppose in TV3’s eyes trainee journos straight out of broadcasting school cost a lot less,

    I suspect also more manageable/ pliable/compliant.

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 6796 posts Report Reply

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