At its worst, you could accuse Campbell Live of steering towards story subjects because of their underdog status - but even then, the motivation would just be that those stories make for better TV.
I actually like Campbell Live for another reason too: he seems to me to be the only interviewer in a prime time slot who is interested in directly challenging authority, getting in the face of politicians and people in power (3 News do a decent job of this too, but rather more infrequently). Having just spent a few weeks in the UK and watching their news coverage, I really feel like that is something sorely lacking from Kiwi prime-time news journalism. Too often, it seems that interview subjects are the ones setting the discussion topics and driving the interview.
In my defence, I only included that particular quote as an example of optimism going forward. Besides, as Media7 itself has shown, "if public-service programmes are worth making" then they can find a home on another outlet.
Great read, Russell - really interesting stuff.
I completely agree with you about the SaveTVNZ7 campaign. It was certainly good to have something trying to stop the cancellation, and I think it will turn into something better and more suitable (and away from TVNZ, as you say). But I did find the funeral theme to be pretty poor, and unlike the rest of the campaign it seemed to be more finger-pointy, not at all in the spirit of finding a solution that suits everybody.
It's in the interests of content companies to sort this out. If HBO made HBO Go available without a cable subscription anywhere in the world I'd sign up tomorrow
I'd like to think I would too - but would making HBO Go available internationally actually slow down piracy? People are so used to getting something for nothing that I don't think there's anything HBO - or any other content producer - could do to stop piracy at this point. HBO surely would've looked closely at the Australian and NZ markets and decided there was no advantage in doing anything here, other than giving the rights to their shows to the likes of SoHo and Showcase (and occasionally other networks, like Enlightened airing on TV One).
Game Of Thrones is the classic example, I think. SoHo airs new episodes a week after the USA, yet nearly everyone I know who watches the show is just downloading it because a) they can't be bothered waiting a week, or b) they can't be bothered waiting for SoHo. I would venture to guess that, even if GoT was airing here a few hours after the US (it airs in the USA around 2pm on a Monday, so could air here at 8.30pm that night), people would still download for exactly the same reason. There is no changing that attitude. And it is an attitude that needs to change.