So what will become of channel Three, or +HR=E, as MediaWorks would have it spelled?
There has been little more than silence since parent company MediaWorks anounced it planned to sell off its TV operations, lock, stock and cameras, with the channel headquarters in Auckland's Eden Terrace.
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MediaWorks makes most of its money through the sale of advertising and here it faces the same challenges as all New Zealand media, including the Herald on Sunday's owner NZME. Well, all except one, but we'll get to that.
Advertising dollars have been dispersed in recent years to the wider diaspora of newer media, including multinational giants such as Google and Facebook. One banking analyst estimates the TV arm of MediaWorks is losing about $10m-$15m a year in ebitda. That means it's costing about $15m a year to keep the TV business going.
At the same time, audience eyes have wandered off to the proliferation of streaming options.
The sell-off was revealed just days after The Project host Jesse Mulligan warned Three was in trouble. "What's the problem? Well, Three has a big competitor," Mulligan said on live TV. "You will have heard of it — TVNZ. They do everything they can to take viewers off Three, and that's what they should do. But at the moment it's not a level playing field."
The playing field is a well-turfed one for TVNZ 1, being owned and operated by the state-owned broadcaster Television New Zealand and underwritten with taxes from you and us.
Broadcasting Minister Kris Faafoi doesn't want to talk about MediaWorks as it's a private company. But the Government is currently in the process of working through its options to strengthen public media. Some options could include making TVNZ go advert-free.
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Faafoi has said that piece of work would be unveiled before the end of this year. Whether or not +HR=E will be still around to read the ministerial briefing is up in the air.
In the meantime, the Government could do something about the abject unfairness of the situation. It could start by moving some of its massive advertising spend from the likes of Facebook and Google to the news organisations that are keeping the Government and TVNZ honest.