Last week NZ Mainstream Media were the recipients of Government handouts and all the money came with strings attached.
BusinessDesk reported on the winners of the first round of Government largesse that officially is described as the Public Interest Journalism Fund.
The beneficiaries include:
Stuff, who was given $300,000. The string attached to the money is that they must produce a “cultural competency” course for journalists with the intention of it being ultimately used across the industry in order to “to fundamentally shift representation in NZ media”.
The BFD received zero dollars as we are a completely independent media voice funded by our subscribers to produce informative and entertaining content with neither a “cultural” nor a “representation” agenda.
The Spinoff, which has the same size audience as The BFD, was given $207,000. The string attached to the money was that they agreed to do a podcast series that would “explore Maori issues”.
The BFD received zero dollars as we explore whatever issues we choose to. Our subscribers fund us because they value our content. They do not dictate to us what we can and can’t publish.
Maori Television, NZME, Pacific Media Network, Newshub and 11 “support partners” were given more than $2.4 million dollars. The string attached to the money was that they must take on 25 journalism cadets based on their race (Maori and Pasifika). They must also include in that number “diverse” cadets. Presumably, this means that they have to be selected (ideally) based on both their race and their identity, i.e. transgender, non-binary, pansexual or some other minority orientation.
The BFD received zero dollars as none of our writers identify as anything interesting so do not attract any government funding. If only we had a Samoan, Transgender woman who was Muslim….sigh.
waateanews.com. managed to score $433,000 in exchange for producing a bilingual current affairs show for Auckland Maori station Radio Waatea.
The BFD has zero dollars to produce a radio show. We would love to have our own radio show and our Fiji born Talkback host Cam Slater could produce fantastic content with $433,000. We simply do not have enough subscriptions yet to fund it.
NZME scored a handout of $440,000. The string attached to this nice chunk of change is that they will produce a weekly bilingual section in the Rotorua Weekender newspaper covering local iwi issues.
The government not only wants to control what the media write about but also the race of the journalists who write about it. No doubt Jacinda Ardern would call it ‘transformational change’. I call it a government agenda to influence the public via paid proxies.
BusinessDesk reports that NZ on Air received 123 applications for the first funding round and recommended 34 for approval. Forty per cent of the money will go to Maori journalism projects.
The biggest single allocation is to RNZ, which already receives roughly $48 million a year from taxpayers and will get an extra $806,000 for its podcast The Detail.
As for those other allocations, I predict most of our money will end up being spent on advocacy journalism. As with the $3.5 million Three Waters propaganda campaign, taxpayers will be paying for their own indoctrination.
The line that once separated journalism from activism is being erased, and it’s happening with the eager co-operation of the mainstream journalism organisations that are lining up to take the state’s tainted money. We are witnessing the slow death of neutral, independent and credible journalism.[…]
Media organisations that seek money from the fund are signing up to a politicised project whose rules are fundamentally incompatible with free and independent journalism.karldufresne.blogspot.com/2021/07/in-new-zealand-this-week.html
The BFD did not take part in what Karl du Fresne described as “an expensive, taxpayer-funded indoctrination exercise.”
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