Friday, February 25, 2011

Christchurch media news - John Drinnan in The Business Herald


Amid the horror of the Christchurch quake, More FM announcer Gary McCormick had a frightening experience that matched thousands of others.
He popped out of the radio station for coffee and was thrown into the rubble as buildings fell around him, hurting his hip.
Initially unable to get to his home in quake-ravaged Lyttelton, he eventually rushed home to his family and 10-day-old twins Kathleen and Florence, finding his mother-in-law lying above the babies' crib to protect them from the falling ceiling.

The family packed into the car and moved out. I caught up with them yesterday in Kaikoura, where he had stopped on his way to taking the family to his wife's parents' house in the Wairarapa. He says he'll fly back in the weekend.

New Zealanders have been well served by media covering the quake.
With the declaration of the country's first national state of emergency, Radio New Zealand takes on a legislated civil defence role and is devoting virtually all its content to the earthquake.
Spokesman John Barr said RNZ was committed to that until midday Monday when it would be reviewed.
One complicating factor has been that the chief executive, Peter Cavanagh, has been out of action after suffering what a source said was a mild stroke.

In terms of coverage, Kim Hill has been providing short, sharp, direct and dissecting interviews.
It makes you feel old to hear her back in a news role, but it's also rather marvellous.

New Zealand media have been providing very good coverage throughout but, ironically enough, Christchurch people have found themselves starved of information.
With no electricity, people can't watch wall-to-wall TV coverage and a lot of mobile phones are out of action with no chance to recharge batteries.
This unsatisfied demand is part of the reason for the Star newspaper going daily.
The Star's offices were hit but owner APN News & Media (which also owns the Herald) is producing a daily compact-sized paper for the city, which will be distributed six days a week as the disaster unfolds and until further notice.

Rick Neville, assistant chief executive of APN New Zealand, said that the problem initially was finding enough outlets for the free paper but this was being resolved as dairies opened.
The paper was being produced with content from the Herald and online, and printed in Ashburton.
Neville was very proud about the way the paper had reacted to the crisis.

People at Canterbury Television have obviously been among the worst affected and our hearts go out to their families and friends, and indeed to all those affected by the disaster.
One person was killed at the Press newspaper and another three staff injured - but these bald numbers do not convey the impact.

Fairfax Media Group executive editor Paul Thompson said the Press - whose heritage building is severely damaged - had been badly affected but the paper was on the streets helped by Fairfax sister paper the Dominion Post in Wellington.
The Press printing room is outside the CBD and is not affected.

The above pieces are from John Drinnan's always excellent weekly media column in The Business Herald which is published each Friday and included as a separate magazine in the New Zealand Herald.
The Bookman would like to take this opportunity to thank Drinnan for his informative column, it is always the first thing I read in Friday's Herald.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

It must be my age too but it definitely made me feel better hearing Kim Hill's controlled and decisive delivery and her sympathetic interviews and chats.