GORDON LIGHTFOOT | National
LOOKING ON THE BRIGHT SIDE
Taxpayer funded state broadcaster Radio New Zealand have been making headlines recently due to all sorts of problems they’ve been having with their staff.
Back in March, cabinet minister Kiri Allan had a go at RNZ during a farewell for her partner Mani Dunlop, who was leaving her position on the Midday show.
More recently RNZ was caught putting out the wrong kind of war propaganda, and now veteran broadcaster Karyn Hay has quit amid allegations of bullying.
RNZ Chief Executive and Chief News Editor Paul Thompson however is looking at the bright side of all this, namely the fact that hardly anyone actually listens to Radio New Zealand anyway. “It’s been hard going the last few weeks, and we’re all feeling it, but it would be even harder if the station were actually popular,” said the optimistic Chief Exec.
“I suppose there’s an upside to everything isn’t there? At the moment we just have to lean into the advantages that come with having an exceptionally small audience.”
With most radio consumption happening for kiwis in their cars on their way to and from work, it’s understandable that they don’t feel like pummeling themselves with painful stories on dull or depressing topics. It’s pretty clear from the numbers that most people opt for music stations with some light banter – and that’s only if they haven’t been able to choose a podcast from an endless supply online.
For now the head of RNZ appeared visibly relaxed and carefree as he discussed how much worse things could have been. “Imagine if we were a popular station like Radio Hauraki and all this drama was happening! Far out, now that would be bad!” he laughed.
“This is all just a storm in a teacup.”
More to come.