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E Tū Hopes Stuff/WBD Deal To Save 6pm Bulletin Will Be Workable

E tū, the union for journalists and media workers in Aotearoa, welcomes the news that Stuff will take over producing the 6pm news bulletin for Three, as a result of the closure of Newshub.

The proposal will see Stuff’s current team of journalists and media workers contributing stories for a new 6pm bulletin which will begin to air the week after the final Newshub show in July. A small number of current Newshub jobs are likely to be saved.

E tū Negotiation Specialist, Michael Wood, says it’s good news for the media and the wider public.

“The prospect of losing a key daily news bulletin was a huge concern for everyone in the media space,” Michael says.

“Our communities need a diversity of voices in the media, and Newshub was an important part of the Fourth Estate. We are pleased that Kiwis will continue to have an option on Three for their 6pm bulletin.

“Stuff is in a good position to move into this space, with significant talent and experience across their workforce. They maintain a presence across Aotearoa’s regions, which could strengthen Three’s news offering.

“This announcement stands in stark contrast to recent moves by TVNZ, which has reduced its news and current affairs offerings citing market pressures. It highlights the lack of foresight and commitment from TVNZ in maintaining a strong news service to the public during times of economic uncertainty.”

However, Michael says that for the new venture to be truly workable, journalism workloads must be managed carefully.

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“Good journalism requires good working conditions, and it’s important that Stuff takes sustainable workloads as a top consideration as they move forward.

“As only a small number of Newshub workers are likely to get jobs on the new bulletin, this still does amount to a loss of skill and experience. It simply will not last if Stuff’s already pressed team have to carry too much extra weight.

“Members at Stuff have already told us that one key concern is how the company manages this new, rather huge responsibility – there isn’t a substitute for skilled, experienced, and supported journalists delivering our country’s news.

“We are looking forward to getting into the details of this new venture and ensuring that it results in excellent news and current affairs for both the workers and the audiences. Aotearoa deserves that.”

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