Six questions on the Fairfax – NZME. merger Advertisers not too worried - but how will consumers fare?

Would Mike Hosking be allowed on Stuff as well as TVNZ, Newstalk ZB and the NZ Herald?

Fairfax and NZME are hoping to have the merger of the two New Zealand operation cleared by the end of the year. The two parties will be having preliminary talks with the competition watchdog the Commerce Commission this week. Advertising issues will be central to deliberations. But it is not yet clear what value, if any, the  Commission will place the public having choice and access to independent voices. The hope is that the public will get to hear more about plans before they are established. TVNZ chairman Joan Withers said of the merger last week: “This is Big”. New Zealand media will not be the same again.

  • How many provincial and community newspapers are likely to be sold or shut down?
  • How many people will lose their jobs?
  • Will brands like Stuff and nzherald,co nz remain and will they maintain distinct news values?
  • Will the mean reducing the number of independent voices and will Fairfax and NZME pull back from sharing opinion-makers with other media like TVNZ?
  • Post merger, would Mike Hosking be allowed to be opinion-maker at Stuff as well as at Newstalk ZB, SevenSharp and the NZ Herald?
  • Would paywalls be established at one site, both websites or neither?

 

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