Google
 

Aardvark Daily

New Zealand's longest-running online daily news and commentary publication, now in its 24th year. The opinion pieces presented here are not purported to be fact but reasonable effort is made to ensure accuracy.

Content copyright © 1995 - 2018 to Bruce Simpson (aka Aardvark), the logo was kindly created for Aardvark Daily by the folks at aardvark.co.uk



Please visit the sponsor!
Please visit the sponsor!

Buying the media

13 September 2017

There is an election in just a matter of days.

Political parties right across the spectrum are working hard to curry favour with the public and the media. They all know that "he who controls the media controls public opinion" so it's worth investing a huge amount of time trying to get the media on your side.

So, call me a cynic, but I can't help but wonder if Labour's proposal to pour gobs of money into RNZ and also add a TV channel to its offerings might not be a blatant attempt to get the state-funded broadcaster on-side.

A lot of people consider RNZ to be rather left-leaning as it is but surely the prospect of "bigger, better, more full-funded" would sway, even if subconsciously, even the most ethical and dedicated broadcaster -- right?

Even if my cynicism is misplaced one must surely ask - do we need *another* publicly owned TV channel? Don't we already have two?

It strikes me that, especially given the falling profits coming out of the SOE that is TVNZ, we'd be much better to simply repurpose TV1 as a non-commercial state-funded broadcaster and let RNZ stick to its knitting.

In fact, given that all the research shows how people are turning away from broadcast content in favour of streamed content -- isn't RNZ already well-positioned to carry on in this market-space, thanks to the live-streaming they do from their studios?

Why the hell would you want to waste taxpayers' money on radio spectrum and the overheads of broadcasting and linear delivery when streaming and VOD is increasingly what people want?

Which again brings me back to the belief that this is a very cynical attempt to buy favour with RNZ in the lead-up to what will be a very close election.

It is not the job of an efficient government to run three state-owned TV channel and I don't know of any other country that does (but I could be wrong). Hell, if they had some half-sensible analysts on the Labour team they'd be saying "Sell TVNZ now, while it still retains some value"... but instead they've said they won't be selling, they'll be adding a new RNZ channel.

Aaaargh!

Personally I'd love to see a return to in-depth, investigative journalism both on radio and perhaps on a state-funded video stream (or VOD). Just look at what the NZH and Stuff are doing now with their "in depth" feature series -- which includes quite a bit of video content. These in-depth pieces have set new records for readers and viewers -- at the same time broadcast TV (both FTA and Sky) is crumbling.

To be honest, I was thinking of voting for Labour but they have just shown how naive they really are. I could never vote for a party that would either try to buy favour with the national radio broadcaster or invest taxpayer dollars in something as 20th-century as broadcast TV, without selling their commercial stations first.

What do readers think?

Is my cynicism misplaced?

Are you in favour of the taxpayer actually increasing the number of broadcast TV channels they own at a time when there's a massive transition *away* from linear broadcast TV?

Please visit the sponsor!
Please visit the sponsor!

Have your say in the Aardvark Forums.

PERMALINK to this column


Rank This Aardvark Page

 

Change Font

Sci-Tech headlines

 


Features:

Beware The Alternative Energy Scammers

The Great "Run Your Car On Water" Scam

 

Recent Columns

EV lolly-scramble for taxpayers' money
The government has just announced that it's throwing $3.7 million at a few lucky companies, with a view to increasing EV use in New Zealand...

The race to secure your computer
There's an extremely important race going on right now...

Missile alert, accident or ploy?
Last Sunday, more than a million people on the Island of Honolulu received a txt message advising them that a ballistic missile attack was imminent and that they should take cover...

Hi-tech vs no-tech
I had an interesting weekend...

Crowdfunding via the public purse
Today's column follows on a little from yesterdays because I'm continuing to highlight just how many companies are duping the tech-ignorant (especially politicians) into parting with their cash...

A refreshing taste of honesty
I think we all remember the Martin Jetpack...

Trusting technology?
Airways is the organisation in New Zealand which administers and manages the airspace above our heads...

Bitcoin versus batteries
Confused by the title of today's column? Don't worry, let me explain...

Welcome to 2018
A new year brings new challenges and new opportunities...

Last column of 2017
Well just five days to Christmas and with all the preparation that's needed for my Christmas eve gig, this will be my last column for 2017...

New nuke footage
Some of the most fascinating images every seen are those of nuclear explosions...