The triumph of Maori TV

October 22nd, 2011 at 1:53 pm by David Farrar

Joseph Romanos writes at Stuff:

A second has been playing out behind the scenes in New Zealand, and it’s been just as torrid as the one that has so engrossed us since September 9.

Rugby fans have been able to watch key World Cup matches live on no less than five New Zealand channels – TV One, TV3, Maori (English version), Maori (Maori language version) and Sky.

The battle for viewers has been fascinating.

TV One began sensationally, drawing 1.015 million viewers for the first match, New Zealand against Tonga. This immediately followed the opening ceremony, also a TV One triumph.

For that first match Sky had an audience of 442,000 and Maori Television, 177,000.

As the tournament has progressed, however, the big mover has been Maori Television.

By the quarterfinals, Maori Television was the most popular of the free-to-air channels. At times its audience was virtually the combined viewership of TV One and TV3.

For the New Zealand v Argentina quarter-final, Maori Television drew 501,000, behind Sky (628,000), but well ahead of TV One (420,000) and TV3 (236,000). It has continued to rate extremely well.

have done an excellent job with their coverage and viewers have voted with their feet. The fact they started off with 20% of the audience of TV One, and at the quarter final had more viewers is a huge tribute to them. They are showing that in many ways they are becoming our national public service broadcaster.

Tahu Potiki, a director of Maori TV, also writes:

I recall the many sceptical, sometimes scathing, comments when it was announced Maori Television was to be the lead broadcaster for the Rugby World Cup, and the political stoush that surrounded the bidding process, but it certainly seems to have been a good choice. It is unclear what the differentiating factor is, but the uninterrupted broadcast is most likely playing a part.

I know I got home late one day and turned television on just in time to catch the last bit of the national anthems. Immediately the teams had finished singing the coverage halted and we crossed to an advertisement or a promotion. I realised then I was watching the wrong channel and changed quickly to Maori TV.

I’ve watched some on Sky Sports and some on Maori TV. Have not decided yet for the final but will probably be Maori TV to hear Keith Quinn hopefully declare the All Blacks the World Champions!

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36 Responses to “The triumph of Maori TV”

  1. JeffW (326 comments) says:

    Great news, so they will be able to return taxpayer funding then.

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  2. Johnboy (15,903 comments) says:

    Be nothing to do with the fact that they and TV3 got to broadcast it for free for the cheapskate peasants and they had less ads than TV3 I suppose?

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  3. Whaleoil (767 comments) says:

    I watched all the games I have watched on Maori TV.

    Their commentators for a start were better and more informed.

    Earlier on they had Gavin Hastings who was great, the last two games they have had Norm Hewitt and Peter Fitzsimmons, both great at sledging each other and entertaining but both also capable of some good technical comments.

    The video feed is the same for all channels so it really comes down to presenters and commentators. Maori TV have put together a superb team.

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  4. Johnboy (15,903 comments) says:

    Where did that bald, ugly, Murri blowing the big trumpet thing come from?

    Never knew the cannibals had that sort of skill till the RWC.

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  5. Viking2 (11,368 comments) says:

    You can do anything when someone else puts up the cash.

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  6. longbow (118 comments) says:

    SD on Freeview HD

    Thanks but no thanks

    TV3 > TV1 > Maori (picture quality wise)

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  7. petal (705 comments) says:

    ” to hear Keith Quinn hopefully declare the All Blacks the World Champions!”

    Somehow I think Peter Montgommery should be there….

    /tongue in cheek

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  8. Longknives (4,686 comments) says:

    “to hear Keith Quinn hopefully declare the All Blacks the World Champions!”

    Ironic that the sour grapes NZ media has steadfastly refused to call the Springboks “World Champions” for the past four years…instead consistently referring to them as “World Cup Holders” or “World Cup Tournament winners”..

    I guess it’s only a ‘World Championship’ if the All Blacks win it eh??

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  9. ben (2,374 comments) says:

    I’m sorry but it is no achievement to take so much money from taxpayers that you don’t have to run commercials: this just proves a subsidy large enough will produce a product capable of beating less-subsidised competitors. Anybody can do that if given enough money.

    Even less inspiring is the racial basis for the subsidy.

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  10. Nick K (1,223 comments) says:

    Maori TV is an excellent channel, on top of its RWC coverage. Time for the taxpayer subsidy to end and Iwi to fund it on its own.

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  11. expat (4,049 comments) says:

    Keith Quinn is senile & Maori TV has low quality picture.
    TV 3 where I am has lesser powered HD picture and sound.
    I’m afraid TV 1 has the best overall package.

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  12. Johnboy (15,903 comments) says:

    Murri could charge people to access their beaches to pick up fuel oil and clean the birds.

    New Zealander’s are so stupid they would pay. :)

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  13. Elaycee (4,356 comments) says:

    I’m actually not too surprised with this trend.

    Sky will always be at the top of the sport ratings table – the best commentators / best colour comments / the best overall package (apart from Ian Jones’ habit of staring at the camera every 3 seconds and butting in on other studio guests).

    But a good chunk of New Zealanders will only be able to watch RWC on Free To Air channels. And that number will be (artificially) high during an event such as RWC, so will be skewed.

    TV1 (fronted by Martin Devlin) is simply not worth watching. Devlin seems overly excited and forgets that people tune in to watch the footy – not listen to him. Their coverage, IMO has gone backwards – something borne out by the numbers.

    TV3 is, well, TV3. They are the TV equivalent of the dance of the desperate. A bunch of overpaid muppets who appear destined to remain at the bottom of the ratings race in NZ.

    Maori TV has grown heaps during RWC. Good commentary and Peter FitzSimons is articulate and knows when to comment and when to shut up. It appears that Maori TV’s growth has been cannibalised (ahem) from TV1.

    But the trick for Maori TV will be to keep the RWC viewers who have tuned in.

    And I very much doubt that will happen – not many viewers want to watch black and white re-runs of Mr Ed dubbed in Te Reo.

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  14. V (693 comments) says:

    Can anybody justify two taxpayer funded channels screening exactly the same thing?

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  15. kowtow (8,188 comments) says:

    TV3 ads,TV1 Devlin (God help us)
    Maoris no ads, a winner.

    Maori TV ,the televisual equivalent of a Greek financial disaster ie taxpayers can do anything………until it’s too late.

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  16. timl (8 comments) says:

    Maori TV has shown other free to air media how to provide sport commentary.
    It’s now time for them and TVNZ to become one taxpayer funded broadcaster. Sell off TV2 and move into the digital age with one public broadcaster handling audio & visual media across the platforms of the 21st century.

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  17. Johnboy (15,903 comments) says:

    Why the fuck should the taxpayer fund a bloody broadcaster timl?

    If your life revolves around watching the box you can pay for it yourself.

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  18. Viking2 (11,368 comments) says:

    It’s now time for them and TVNZ to become one taxpayer funded broadcaster. Sell off TV2 and move into the digital age with one public broadcaster handling audio & visual media across the platforms of the 21st century.

    Nope, sell the fucking lot and stop giving them money. May the best producers win.
    Just like the rugby.

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  19. macdo (18 comments) says:

    The watershed was a few months ago when Maori TV broadcast the state funeral of Sir Paul Reeves while TVNZ ran it’s usual morning infomercial schedule.

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  20. tvb (4,327 comments) says:

    I think we should drop any pretense that TVNZ supplies public service broadcasting. Maori TV is doing it really well whereas TVNZ fails. I think the public service funding for TVNZ should be axed but they can have some money for making programs along with other channels. I think TVNZ think they are still a monopoly. I cannot see any point in TV2.

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  21. ross (1,437 comments) says:

    > Why the fuck should the taxpayer fund a bloody broadcaster timl?

    Good question, Why don’t you put that question to our illustrious leader, Mr Key? He seems to think that giving MediaWorks a special $43 million handout is necessary.

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  22. noskire (837 comments) says:

    Looking forward to the comments from Mehrtens tomorrow nite (hic).

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  23. Other_Andy (2,576 comments) says:

    @ross

    You are starting to look like a troll ross.
    There was no $43 million handout.

    Read…….
    Kiwiblog – ross October 20th, 2011 at 4:35 pm

    Same question.
    Same answer.

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  24. swan (659 comments) says:

    “And I very much doubt that will happen – not many viewers want to watch black and white re-runs of Mr Ed dubbed in Te Reo.

    Actually Maori tv plays plenty of stuff in English, with some good movies and docos. Maori and Tvnz7 are generally the only channels worth watching on a week night.

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  25. timl (8 comments) says:

    In a perfect world there would be no state tv but it seems the NZ public think they need it. That’s why I compromise. Sell TV2 and roll the rest into one digital media SOE (including Radio NZ).

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  26. Dazzaman (1,138 comments) says:

    It’ll be Maori TV for me….and not for silly old past it Keef Kwin, more for the entertaining commentary of Te Arahi Maipi, hopefully Karl Tenana & Buck Shelford.

    And I very much doubt that will happen – not many viewers want to watch black and white re-runs of Mr Ed dubbed in Te Reo.

    Haven’t seen a minute of it have you….idiot.

    Another good point of Maori TV is the total lack of silly advertising running rampant on the state broadcasters channels.

    Maori & Prime are the only free to air channels worth turning the box on to.

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  27. Clint Heine (1,570 comments) says:

    An excellent case to sell TVNZ and stop funding to Maori TV. The proof is in the pudding.

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  28. kino flo (82 comments) says:

    I thought One and 3 didn’t have the rights to play the quarter-finals live, so its hardly a fair comparison with Maori TV (which was the only FTA broadcaster with live coverage). The semi final with the ABs versus Aussie was a different story. All broadcasters were live. TV One 659,390 viewers, Sky Sport 653,340 viewers, TV3 397,800 viewers, Maori Television 262,680 viewers.

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  29. expat (4,049 comments) says:

    OK, OK, Devlins is a tool (best not talk about Hamish on 3) and while the MTV commentary was a bit one dimensional at time on balance if I were to mashup the channels I’d go for Ones broadcast strength, with a mix of commentary from MTV and One.

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  30. Thomas the Unbeliever (141 comments) says:

    Perhaps, as shareholders in TVNZ, we should be asking who made the decision to use Devlin to front the RWC and lose TVNZ its market share. I suspect that more people have been driven away from TVNZ covereage by his shouting and ego than have been drawn to Maori TV by the lack of ads.

    Devlin has no place on TV. He is nether entertaiing nor informative. I have shifted to Maori TV soley because I found his commentating irritating and distracting.

    Someone at TVNZ needs to realise that people watch rugby for the rugby … not for the self-important TV presenters. The ‘talent’ is on the field – not in the studio!

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  31. Paulus (2,602 comments) says:

    Soon have Coronation Street in Te Reo when TVNZ can it as they are trying to do, with more advert time than censored/exorcised programme, as its in children’s programme time.

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  32. kino flo (82 comments) says:

    Ratings for 3rd/4th playoff (from Throng) on Friday night.

    TVOne 461,720
    Sky Sport 437,860
    TV3 337,170
    Maori Television 155,880

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  33. troy mclure (9 comments) says:

    Longknives

    ““to hear Keith Quinn hopefully declare the All Blacks the World Champions!”

    Ironic that the sour grapes NZ media has steadfastly refused to call the Springboks “World Champions” for the past four years…instead consistently referring to them as “World Cup Holders” or “World Cup Tournament winners”..

    I guess it’s only a ‘World Championship’ if the All Blacks win it eh??”

    Probably because they didn’t deserve to be called world champions, this might explain their er “rwc triumph” for you. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Z6GnUTVAF0

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  34. leftyliberal (642 comments) says:

    http://www.arcrugby.co.nz for the commentary, TV1 or TV3 for the HD footage. Unfortunately the net broadcast is sometimes 5 seconds behind, but to hear Jed it’s worth it.

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  35. BlairM (2,314 comments) says:

    An excellent case to sell TVNZ and stop funding to Maori TV. The proof is in the pudding.

    No, the proof of the pudding is in the eating. The proof has never been in the pudding. You have to eat the pudding. That’s the proverb.

    And yes, the government should neither own nor subsidise television stations. Triangle TV is an excellent community broadcaster which has excellent public service programming, all without government ownership or contribution. I don’t see the necessity.

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  36. Clint Heine (1,570 comments) says:

    Blair – bastard :) The eating, was (at least in my head) the fact that the Kiwi public were indeed taking advantage and using Maori TV. I thought it went without saying – but see your point!

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