RNZ returns to its regular schedule on Monday – declaring an end to a four week summer when the world allegedly stops spinning for us all to catch our breath. Locally, its a time when politics and business slow down allowing local media operate on a skeleton staff for a couple of weeks. RNZ takes that a step further. It always restarts programming year on Wellington Anniversary Day, after what is effectively a month long break. Its a week too long. National Radio has been missing in action this week. The world is in upheaval due to Trump. Morning Report will return on Monday with the world utterly changed.
What is so special about RNZ that it restarts a week later? The reason I am told that an extra week allows most of the staff to take most of their holidays at once and that reduces disruption later in the year.
Lord knows, other media organsiations are able to manage this contingency and return a week earlier. I’m wonder if RNZ needs to break with tradition. I’ve always questioned these long summer breaks and the logic RNZ management see it as time to lighten up. Jesse Mulligan in the mornings and the quasi-commercial Matinee Idol in the afternoon. The latter is an acquired taste I have yet to acquire. For some of us the summer schedule is a time we listen to less Natrad, not more.
The world is changing rapidly- even down in New Zealand. I wonder after a year of Trump whether RNZ will be able to take four weeks break its summer season in 2018.