TVNZ's poster boy Jack Tame loses all credibility

Less than a week after TVNZ unveiled its plans to revamp its news reporting, viewers have been left wondering whether TVNZ poster boy Jack Tame’s coverage of the Andy Haden resignation was what they were envisioning.

Tame’s approach to the story was to sensationalise it further than we’ve ever seen before; an all new low for our state broadcaster.  We weren’t the only ones who thought so.

The comments on Throng’s news comparison for Saturday night were scathing:

“I have to say that the lead story about Andy Haden was one of the worst examples I ever seen of “personality journalism,” wrote one viewer.

“Is this the sort of stories we have to look forward to now that the tv1 reporters are going to edit their own pieces?,” wrote another.

Tame looked like a 14-year-old high school student as he re-told the events of the week, pointing at his whiteboard with interspersed flashes of stock footage to spice things up.  It wasn’t news reporting. It was gratuitous use of an editing suite that was more about how cool young Tame’s story could appear on screen rather than the story itself.  In short, it was a disgrace.

Perhaps Tame was proud of his work – proud in the same way a kid would show off a school video project to his grandparents.  Perhaps that’s why it wouldn’t bother TVNZ to allow such rubbish journalism to be broadcast, what with all those aging viewers and all.

It appears to as though ONE News no longer care about quality news reporting and why would they? The ratings for the last few weeks have been phenomenal.

Perhaps we are wrong and this is the kind of “news” viewers want.

I suspect though that it’s just cold winter nights and TVNZ’s long-held position as the “most trusted” news broadcaster.  However, as Throng commenter dextra wrote:

“It’s a sad day when you have to go to Prime to get the actual news, but fortunately their newsroom is so under resourced they don’t have time for this sort of marketing/branding crap.”

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About the author

Regan is one of the co-founders of Throng Media.
If they're on, I'm usually watching Game of Thrones, The Walking Dead, 24, Battlestar Galactica, The X Factor, Survivor, House of Cards, Mad Men and the NRL.
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  • Damon

    I happened to see this page from a re-tweet, but a factually inacurate, unbalanced opinion piece of ‘writing’ like this is clearly why you’re not in tv…or any credible platform of journalism. It’s just another hate-filled rant against TVNZ that is cool amoung the jealous, wannabe reporters in this country.

  • Rachel

    Can you clarify the factual inaccuracies rather than rant back?

  • regan

    @Damon, I do look forward to being accused of unbalanced opinion when I call TVNZ out for doing a good job at something in the future, the same as I have done in the past.

  • jay

    I feel sorry for Jack Tame. TVNZ have made him the face of reporting but he is still so young and I’m guessing lacks alot of life experience. Maybe TVNZ need to look at the way they hire graduates.

  • Benjamin Paul

    In some respects I agree with Damon, I do find regan’s rants and raves to usually be attacking One News and they lack in credibility itself when the bias is so obvious.

    Opinions aside on one vs three I thought that yes Jack Tame’s story was lacking in credibility but look at the actual story. Both three news and one news lead with this…which is a sign of what the f*** else are they going to report? 
    When I was watching the Jack Tame report I thought that the stupid saga of Haden’s rape comments were presented with enough of sarcasm and sillyness that was appropriate to the story itself. Honestly I enjoyed the way it was presented, if it was something more serious (which this is clearly not serious)…I may be more critical. My only criticism of the story would be that it possibly should not have been the first story.

    Bring on 30 minute news on the weekend.

  • regan

    Perhaps I need to collate a list of posts directed at both networks. Whether I write about One or Three, someone always calls me biased.

  • bobscoffee

    I don’t think there’s anything wrong with this article, in fact I agree with it and think it applies to both ONE News and 3 News. If you want to go somewhere for news in this country, don’t turn to the television.

  • dextra

    @Regan: Fear not, one of my favorite Journalism lecturers always used to say the best sign of a balanced reporter is when they get equal complaints from both sides. Looking at your history, I’d say you’re doing reasonably well.

    Plus, if you check your ip access_log you’ll probably find most of the whiney commenters are coming direct from TVNZ PR.

    Dear TVNZ,  you epic failures. Don’t expect to compile your lead in the newsroom with a mishmash of PTCs and “Glenn Beck’ish” whiteboards and not get complaints.

  • monreve

    is this the “Jack” who “claims” he has to sit on a cushion when he co presents breakfast TV ….cos of back problems? Not that he wants to look taller than his co hosts ?

  • wohucanglong

    Absolutely pathetic piece of journalism. Can someone at TVNZ please tell Jack that to be a journalist means reporting the news, not being the news. In fact, this was so bad I forgot halfway through the item that this was about Andy Haden resigning. I began to think it was about Jack and how hard he has been working to chase the story . . . or is that to create a story? This lame piece of journalism should be used in schools throughout the country as a clear cut example of what not to do.

  • bobscoffee

    Is there no intermediate step for budding journalists who have come out of journalism school to train and develop skills, before appearing on national tv news? I suppose if we had regional news again that is where it would happen?