Home > Media, The Body Politic > TVNZ7 – value for money!

TVNZ7 – value for money!



At the end of this month, TVNZ7 will be switched off.

That will mean the end of New Zealand’s only currently, non-commercial, public  broadcasting TV.

It will mean the end of an hour-long, no-ads, news service at 8pm; science programmes; ‘Backbenches‘; documentaries; current affairs programmes such as ‘The Court Report‘; and many other excellent programmes.

And not a reality/make-over show; cooking-porn programme; grim US crime show; inane US sitcom; or soft-porn show such as ‘The GC‘  anywhere to be seen.

TVNZ7 cost taxpayers from between $15 to $17 million per year. Putting that into context, NZ had commercial-free, public TV broadcasting for $4.25 per every man, woman, and child a year.  Or, 8 cents a week per New Zealander.

Only the most ardent National/ACT-voting free-marketeer could grumble at that.

Adding insult to injury, Broadcasting Minister Craig Foss said,

The Government values Kiwi content and invests $230m each year on public broadcasting and supporting New Zealand content on our screens.”

See:  TVNZ7 backers enlist Chen

If that’s true (and why should we disbelieve a National Minister?), TVNZ7’s budget is barely 7% of the $230 million that Craig Foss referred to.

Seven percent.

It is simply inconceivable that National can continue to claim that there is insufficient funding for TVNZ7. The money – $230 million – exists.

Only the will to  maintain funding for TVNZ7 is lacking.

Perhaps National’s  polling suggests that the majority of TVNZ7 viewers are critical thinkers who do not swallow the mindless, infantile pap of commercialised television? And these viewers are also likely to dare question National’s policies?

In which case this blogger can guess at the bloody-mindedness of  the National Party at steadfastly refusing to fund TVNZ7. One can only assume that Craig Foss and his National mates  are deliberately digging their toes in,  and their willingness to close down public television is also a form of vindictiveness.

Governments don’t like being questioned.

Governments prefer that after we do our three-yearly duty on Election Day. After that;  sit down; shut up; and watch tits’n’arse on “The GC” or umptyleven ways to cook a turnip on several dozen cooking programmes. Or watch yet another female victim’s corpse being dispassionately poked and prodded on another American cop-vs-killer crime show…

But public television that encourages the public to… think?

Oh no, we can’t have that, now, can we?

Especially if an ad-free broadcaster takes viewers away from a State-owned,  commercial TV broadcaster. This means less profit for the commercial broadcaster and less dividends paid to the government’s Consolidated Fund.

Commercial self interest mixed with political disdain for a TV network that informs the viewer is an unholy brew. Little wonder that National has every reason to oversee TVNZ7’s demise.

One can only hope that this will be remembered on Election Day in 2014 – if not earlier.

Let’t not forget one very simple fact; this is not about funding.  Minister Foss has already admitted that the money is there to save TVNZ7.

This is purely and simply about political will.  And the political will is to pull the plug on public broadcasting.

They just don’t have the balls to admit it.




Email Address

Broadcasting Minister Craig Foss, <craig.foss@parliament.govt.nz>

Related Blogposts

Inconvenient truths? No go, Fair Go!!

A public broadcaster for New Zealand?

The Worst Newspaper Editorial Since – – – Whenever?!

21 May – Public meeting: TVNZ7 gets the big tick!

TVNZ7 – Picking at the body before it’s cold

Additional Reading

Scoop: Tom Frewen – NZ on Air Spooked by Political Interference

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= fs =

Categories: Media, The Body Politic
  1. Sentient Headmounted Laser
    19 June 2012 at 1:05 pm

    As much as I enjoy reading your posts frank, this one is pretty vacuous, in the logical sense. Money is the reason national does anything.

  2. Sentient Headmounted Laser
    19 June 2012 at 1:05 pm

    That said, there’s an inherent flaw in capitalism, the “profit motive” as they charming euphemise greed/drive/Nietzsche’s Will-to-power is assumed to be not only necessary (which it is, silly commies) but _sufficient_ which it is not.

  3. 19 June 2012 at 1:08 pm

    @ SHL; “That said, there’s an inherent flaw in capitalism, the “profit motive”

    I think that can be summed up with the well-used maxim, ‘They know the price of everything, and the value of nothing’.

    “Money is the reason national does anything.”

    Of course. But the post will find it’s way to various people for whom it needs to be spelled out so that THEY know that WE know. Sometimes, the obvious needs to be stated so that ambiguities and nuances are replaced with The Bleedin’ Obvious… 😉

  4. Sentient Headmounted Laser
    19 June 2012 at 1:09 pm

    Making the obvious obvious to everyone :p

  5. Possum
    19 June 2012 at 1:12 pm

    msg sent 2 mp, l bet he wont read it as he will only get the positive mail. l dont care which side of the house runs this channel, although 2 shut down is a bloody shame.

  6. 19 June 2012 at 1:26 pm

    Great piece Frank.

  7. 19 June 2012 at 1:36 pm

    Could it be that key ‘s advisors (From Australia) trying to change the course of history, to encourage nz to think American…taking away what we consider important to us??? im of the thinking, national is determine to take away our rights, our way of life, everything that makes us uniquely New Zealanders…..is this the change the millions of nat’s voters want???…I also think nat’s wanted to put n end to TVNZ7 so they can’t sway the public with any scrutiny on its affairs, plus to say there is not enough funds to keep it going is absolutely bulshit, to me its another stake driven in the hearts of every nzlders to divert the thinking to these corporate companies that r solely american influenced or american owned, i feel this is the big picture behind everything nat’s is doing we all know its about mega $$$$…all i can say is money can buy everything n anything …but it can’t buy the true blue kiwi at heart…

  1. 17 January 2013 at 3:17 pm
  2. 19 May 2013 at 3:29 pm

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