Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Taxpayer TV loses money

The DomPost is reporting that TVNZ are dropping their head programmer after ratings fell "dramatically" and advertising rates had to be cut.

Among TVNZ's key demographic of people aged 25 to 54, its share has dropped from 55 percent to about 37 percent. The network slashed TV1's peak viewing (6pm to 10pm) advertising charges last month by 21 percent.

Is this the result of someone deciding that "New Zealanders want to see themselves on the telly", that lauded and lofty aim? Is this our cherished charter?

Just give us some decent entertainment.

(At least one person will be quietly smiling to himself this morning as he presents his superb "World City".)


darren said...

Isn't TVNZ paying the price for dumbing down its programming.
TV1 should really try and justify itself by being a centre of excellence leaving TV 2 TV3 atc to deal with the massmarket crap.

Anonymous said...


Isn't that perhaps part of the problem? In trying to buck the trend of what people *want* to watch (i.e. the 'market crap') they suddenly found that nobody wanted to watch. It's unfortunate that the majority obviously don't share your more refined taste but is that a reason to make everyone pay to indulge your minority interests?
Unless of course you argue that they should be providing stuff that people don't want to watch at taxpayers expense under the guise of some kind of 'market failure'.

Lindsay Mitchell said...

The departing head programmer said that she had wanted to get away from their reliance on British product. Perhaps a lot of people like British product.

TV1, in my observation, was running quite a bit of fairly highbrow specialised interest stuff eg programmes about artists, nz documentaries. I don't think they did 'dumb down' but maybe people just want a good drama or comedy. Hard to know without analysing the individual programme ratings.

But a two hour quiz about the state of our health is just a turn-off - literally.

Brian Smaller said...

I have to say that I hardly ever watch TV1. The only time in recent times was when they screened Season Two of Rescue Me. Get rid of tax payer funded TV completely I say. The people have already voted on TV1 with their remote buttons. If there is to be any tax payer funded TV just fund Maori TV and leave it at that (I like the cooking programmes they have).

Anonymous said...

This is so funny. TVNZ eliminated the TV1 and TV2 programmers and recruited an overall programmer for both channels from a marketing background and with no programming knowledge. And you wonder why they lost ratings? It was reported at the time that advertisiers and programmers had concerns about the appointment but TVNZ denied any problems. All we got was a dumbing down and a scrambled identity for both channels that confused the established audiences. As you said Lindsay, there was the real problem, a programmer with an agenda that clearly did not understand the channel or the auidence. This ia gross failure of management.