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Mediawatch looks critically at the New Zealand media - television, radio, newspapers and magazines as well as the 'new' electronic media.


Eyes on the RWC prize

Mon, 16 Apr 2018 09:12:00 +1200

The Rugby World Cup in Japan next year will be screened here by TVNZ and telco Spark. For the first time, fans who want every game live will have to pay to watch it online. Is it a significant moment for the way we watch our sport?

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Taika's blurt makes media mad as f***

Sun, 15 Apr 2018 09:10:00 +1200

Taika Waititi has spoken out about racism in New Zealand previously without controversy. So have other entertainers. Why did our media suddenly seize on another recent passing comment of his - four days after it was first published?

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Rebellious US paper turns on its owners

Sun, 15 Apr 2018 09:09:00 +1200

Fed up with years of cuts administered by its owners, The Denver Post’s staff told them to get lost this week - in the pages of their own paper. A former Denver Post editor tells Mediawatch why - and what happened next.

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The medals and the misery

Sun, 15 Apr 2018 09:07:00 +1200

While the media celebrated our medalists on the Gold Coast this past fortnight, they also milked the misery of some of those who failed to fire. 

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Mediawatch for 15 April 2018

Sun, 15 Apr 2018 09:06:00 +1200

Taika's blurt makes media mad as f***; milking the misery of our athletes who failed to fire; The Denver Post turns on its owners; talk radio fact-checking.

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Transport plan sparks front page road rage

Sun, 08 Apr 2018 09:11:00 +1200

Labour's ten-year plan for transport had a lot in it for the media to explain, but coverage focused on political claims and counter-claims about tax, and complaints about pain at the pump over the price of petrol.

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Latest episode of 'Curran events'

Sun, 08 Apr 2018 09:11:00 +1200

The fallout from Carol Hirschfeld's RNZ resignation and continuing pressure on the broadcasting minister Clare Curran were closely covered by the media again this week. Where are we now in the saga The Listener called 'Curran events'  - and what will be in the next episode?

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TVNZ gets back in the Games

Sun, 08 Apr 2018 09:09:00 +1200

TVNZ gave away the Commonwealth Games in 2010 and Sky TV was the only game in town again four years later. Mediawatch asks why TVNZ has decided to go for gold with the Games again this year and if it's a sign of things to come for other live sports - including the Rugby World Cup.

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Mediwatch for 8 April 2018

Sun, 08 Apr 2018 09:08:00 +1200

Transport plan sparks road rage of the front page - and on air; TVNZ gets back in the Games; the latest episode of 'Curran affairs'

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Cricket controversy fires up our media

Sun, 01 Apr 2018 09:10:00 +1200

Aussies cheating at cricket against South Africa half a world away had nothing to do with us. But it seemed like nothing else was in the news after the scandalous story first broke.

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Top level turbulence at RNZ and the Beehive

Sun, 01 Apr 2018 09:10:00 +1200

One morning meeting late last year led to a key RNZ executive suddenly quitting this week - and intense pressure on the broadcasting minister to do the same. Mediawatch looks at how that happened and asks RNZ’s boss what this means for the big-budget boost the broadcaster hopes to secure.

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Mediawatch for 1 April 2018

Sun, 01 Apr 2018 09:06:00 +1200

Aussie cricket cheating fires up our media; turbulence at the top of RNZ - and the Beehive; tricky questions for visiting VIPS.

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RNZ shock also rocks government

Wed, 28 Mar 2018 09:10:00 +1300

The effects of Carol Hirschfeld’s resignation from RNZ over an off-the-books meeting with the broadcasting minister go beyond the broadcaster itself. It comes as the minister was putting in place a system to fund broadcasting at arms’ length from politicians, says Mediawatch.

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Obamamania in overdrive . . .

Sun, 25 Mar 2018 09:10:00 +1300

The private visit of former US president Barack Obama got blanket coverage this week, even though he blanked the media and he said little of substance.

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Why Widodo went under the radar

Sun, 25 Mar 2018 09:09:00 +1300

While a former US President’s visit preoccupied our media this week, the state visit of the current president of Indonesia - the world’s fourth most populous nation - went mostly under the radar. You’ll look in vain for reports about what was discussed at top-level talks about important issues.

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Visual Trumpery - the good and bad of data journalism

Sun, 25 Mar 2018 09:07:00 +1300

Good data journalism makes lots of important information easily understandable and it clarifies complicated issues for us. But visiting expert Alberto Cairo warns we must also beware of visualisations that look convincing but skew the truth - and reveals the statistical benchmark for heavy metal bands.

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Mediawatch for 25 March 2018

Sun, 25 Mar 2018 09:06:00 +1300

Obamamania in overdrive - Widodo under the radar; Visual Trumpery - the good and bad of data; sensing a story?

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Sensing a story?

Sun, 25 Mar 2018 09:05:00 +1300

For years, critics of the so-called psychics starring in TVNZ’s Sensing Murder pointed out that none of them have ever actually solved a cold case or found a missing person. If you believe recent reports, one of them has finally proved them wrong.

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Summer camp scandal sparks flood of opinion

Sun, 18 Mar 2018 09:11:00 +1300

Labour's summer camp scandal triggered a flood of opinion in the media this past week. Much of it claimed political spin had overridden the rights of the victims, but the coverage and comment also made it an even more political story.

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Publisher puts a cat among the pigeons

Sun, 18 Mar 2018 09:10:00 +1300

Once a behind-the-scenes boss, National Business Review owner Todd Scott has been front-and-centre lately - culling contributors, taking on ad agencies and clashing with other journalists including his own. He tells Mediawatch it's all part of a plan to put paying subscribers at the heart of the business.  

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Digital media pioneer urges radical rethink of copyright

Sun, 18 Mar 2018 09:08:00 +1300

Our creaking pre-internet copyright law is up for review, with the rights of digital-age creators and consumers in conflict. Canadian author and online pioneer Cory Doctorow tells Mediawatch propping up old business models would be like rewarding the winners of last year’s lottery all over again. But if we're more free to share online, how will anyone make a living?​

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Mediawatch for 18 March 2018

Sun, 18 Mar 2018 09:06:00 +1300

Flood of opinion follows Labour's summer camp revelations; pioneering digital journalist Cory Doctorow urges NZ to free up copyright law; NBR's boss pushes subscriber-funded journalism; Korean correction.

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MeToo media campaign inundated with messages

Sun, 11 Mar 2018 09:10:00 +1300

Inspired by #MeToo campaigns abroad, broadcaster Alison Mau and publisher Stuff are urging New Zealanders to blow the whistle on sexual assault and harassment at work. Hundreds of women have already been in touch with stories Ms Mau described as "heartbreaking".

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The media’s PR people problem

Sun, 11 Mar 2018 09:09:00 +1300

The way lobbyists and PR people move in and out of political circles has created a problem for the media who use them to fill their programs, stories and websites more and more these days. One publisher tells Mediawatch he’s cutting ties completely with people “paid to push a point of view.”

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Mediawatch for 11 March 2018

Sun, 11 Mar 2018 09:05:00 +1300

MeToo campaign spreads the net wide; the media's PR people problem; a protest that wasn't.

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How far off is the government's media funding fix?

Sun, 04 Mar 2018 09:10:00 +1300

The broadcasting minister has appointed advisors to look into funding our public media at arm's length from government. The new TV channel she once wanted seems to be off the table for the foreseeable future, but when will we know who gets the $38 million funding boost promised before the election?

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Will the Swiss pull the plug on public broadcasting?

Sun, 04 Mar 2018 09:08:00 +1300

While our government is promising to put more public money into public broadcasting, Switzerland is about to vote on whether to pull the plug on it altogther.

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Mediawatch for 4 March 2018

Sun, 04 Mar 2018 09:05:00 +1300

Soft-focus portraits of the PM; minister moves towards media funding fix; Swiss vote on paying for public broadcasting; will new voice tech take off here?

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Portrait of the PM goes sour

Mon, 26 Feb 2018 15:53:00 +1300

A fawning portrait of our PM has been condemned as creepy and sexist hours after it aired in Australia. But while that made headlines here, her part in a recent overseas broadcast marking a political milestone for women went completely unreported here. 

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Look! No hands! The rise of ‘voice’

Sun, 25 Feb 2018 09:10:00 +1300

Voice-activated ‘smart speakers’ now on the market mean you can get news online without lifting a finger. Our big media companies are all on board, but will this change the nature of our news? Or will Kiwis give the hands-free habit the finger?

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Return to sender: bogus yarns from The Mail

Sun, 25 Feb 2018 09:07:00 +1300

Do chips make your hair grow back? No. Is cleaning the house as bad for you as smoking? No. But our click-hungry news websites keep running truth-bending beat-up news stories from British online outlet The Mail.

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Mediawatch for 25 February 2018

Sun, 25 Feb 2018 09:06:00 +1300

Little local papers culled by big publisher Stuff; NZME signposts a paywall for premium content; Look - no hands! The rise of 'voice'; time to return the Mail's bogus yarns to sender.

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Big publisher culls community papers

Wed, 21 Feb 2018 14:19:00 +1300

The country's biggest publisher of news is preparing to close or sell many of its rural and community newspapers around the country. Mediawatch looks at the reasons why and what it might mean for the media.

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