The Death of Mainstream News and the Newshub Black Swan Event

Newshub (TV3’s) imminent demise has ironically made headline news here in New Zealand. But commentators and analysts have ignored the elephant in the room and failed to look at the bigger picture.

Opinion by Martin Harris

As One News (State controlled) is left as your “sole source of truth” on television we become more like North Korea every day. All that’s missing is the immortal lady in the pink kimono robotically reciting propaganda. Well, not quite. Who watches TV now anyhow?


And that is what has been blamed on the closure of corporate-owned Newshub, the only major competitor to One News on live TV. We all stream now, or read the news via the many and varied feeds available (The author’s inbox is bulging with a multitude of alerts and updates from around the world). With so many alternatives, who needs the TV news? Those with cellular telephones can see the news in the palm of their hand at a glance.

But that’s not it. Both One News and Newshub have online digital platforms and replays available that are just as easy to access at your convenience. Paywalls for premium content and advertising ought to be paying the bills. But ad revenue is down they say.

So why is ad revenue down? Why are people not watching?

The answer is staring them in the faces. Data and stats and questionnaires galore indicate that trust in the mainstream news is at an all-time low. People don’t watch: Therefore why advertisers be attracted?

If the content was relevant and engaging, people would watch, wouldn’t they? Ten minutes of Maori language greetings and alternative place-names does not help either. While the author is all for preservation and promotion of culture, I’d prefer not to have it rammed down my throat when I’m attempting inform myself on current events thanks very much.

People switch off when the news fails to be relevant. When it fails to present stories with balance and objectivity. When political bias becomes blatantly obvious. When left-wing figures, such as Joe Biden or Jacinda Ardern are presented with fawning admiration while centre-right wingers such as Trump or Winston Peters are presented in craftily edited bytes lasting a few seconds accompanied by the barely hidden smirks and derogatory snuck premises of the presenters. Neither of the aforementioned are “far right”.

People switch off because the mainstream news media treats intelligent viewers like idiots, and with the deluge of information available online, people are getting smarter and better informed. They are asking questions, and the answers are resulting in justified mistrust of the news media.

This writer is old enough to remember when the 6pm news was followed by a 7pm hard-hitting interview-based current affairs segment. The likes of Paul Holmes, John Campbell or Mike Hosking would put politicians and leading public figures under the spotlight and grill them mercilessly on live television. A great way of holding our leaders to account. That all went down the gurgler about the time Ardern and Covid hit the nation.

Instead of the aforementioned, we were fed a panel of smirking, sniggering presenters reinforcing the biases and propaganda of the prior news segment in an allegedly entertaining manner. Obvious dumbing down at work and a further kick in the teeth to the intelligence of viewers.

This is why alternative news platforms have emerged and are thriving. Reality Check Radio, Chris Lynch Media, The BFD…I won’t present a comprehensive list here, but there are plenty of sources available which present news in a broad spectrum of styles and focuses, whether it be relatively mainstream or deeper dives such as the items we present here at Uncensored News, we are all alive and well and many, including Uncensored, derive income from reader support rather than advertising revenue.

Above: The future of MSM?

So, contrary to my opening remarks about comparisons to North Korea, the opposite is in fact true. We are witnessing the “Black Swan” death of Newshub (which is really no surprise to us) and the rise of independent and alternative news.

To paraphrase Timothy Leary: Switch off, tune in, and wake up. Time to think for yourself.

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Martin Harris

I have a lovely partner and 3 very active youngsters. We live in the earthquake ravaged Eastern Suburbs of Christchurch, New Zealand. I began commenting/posting on Uncensored back in early 2012 looking for discussion and answers on the cause and agendas relating to our quakes. I have always maintained an interest in ancient mysteries, UFOs, hidden agendas, geoengineering and secret societies and keep a close eye on current world events. Since 2013 I have been an active member of community, being granted admin status and publishing many blogs and discussion threads. At this time I'm now helping out with admin and moderation duties here at Uncensored where my online "life" began.

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