Canon media awards

The Canon Media Awards were handed out last night.

NZ Herald reports: NZME’s clean sweep at the Canon Media Awards

If they got a clean sweep then there’s not much point in saying anything about them. Except that I would suggest that that headline at the Herald doesn’t win any awards.

Clean sweep: “the winning of all the prizes, rounds, contests, etc., in a competition…”

I see that While NZ herald and other NZME media won quite a few awards, including Best Newspaper of the Year and Best Weekly Newspaper of the Year, but I also see Newshub, The Press and the Dominion Post, RNZ and others so it can’t have been a clean sweep.

Best headline: Matthew Dallas, Manawatu Standard – they are Fairfax, not NZME, so not the Herald headline writer.

Of course NZME and Fairfax are going to dominate because they own most of the media. From Regulator set to rule on Fairfax, NZME merger:

If the merger is allowed, what would the combined company own?

The Stuff and NZ Herald websites, almost all of the country’s major newspapers with the exception of The Otago Daily Times, a raft of community newspapers and magazines, and about half the country’s commercial radio stations, including Newstalk ZB, The Hits and ZM.

So they should dominate any awards. And they will inevitably write a proud story or two about how great they are – but they shouldn’t claim clean sweeps when they don’t get them.

Here are all the Canon Media Award winners, and also the 2017 finalists.

I’ll just focus on the Digital Award section.

Best Blog Site: Villainesse
Best News Website or App: Newshub
Website of the Year: NZ Herald

One out of three to NZME, not a clean sweep there.

So well done to Lizzie Marvelly with her win. Can’t say I have read it so don’t know what it’s like. Alexa ranks it as the 9,282nd most popular website in New Zealand (NZ Herald is 10th and Newshub 74th).

What was the competition like? The other finalists were Public Address (6,423) and The Spinoff parents (a part of The Spinoff at 270th).

Public Address won last year. Villianesse was also a finalist then, along with The Pantograph Punch.

I don’t think they win on their popularity.

The judges don’t have any specialist bloggers, the only blog mention is Tim Watkins who is from traditional media but also blogs at Pundit.

How do you get considered for an award? You have to enter.

What are the criteria for judging? I have no idea.

So the winners are the best of those who entered, and are then chosen by the judges. I can’t find any indication of how many entries they got.

If you are proud of your blog and like going to award nights and getting awards if you’re lucky then the Canon awards may be for you.

But when two companies dominate media in New Zealand, and blogs that most people won’t know exist, then they probably aren’t that big a deal.

The Nippert tax investigations

Media is widely criticised for it’s shallowness, it’s obsession with trivia, and it’s lack of investigative reporting.

Last year Matt Nippert showed that there is still some old school investigation going on. He has detailed his series on articles on tax last year – 19 articles at NZ Herald on the topic were published through the year, in what he calls “a deliberate effort to dig into the opaque world of corporate tax avoidance and the growing Tax Gap.”

Not the most popular of topics, but far more important than much of the news we are now dished up.

The series started with package on the front page of the Herald on March 18. This included:

A pre-planned series of stories followed, including

Nippert then looked at government policy on the issue, including

Some further drilling down:

Nippert: “Throughout all this, the opinions of the public and policy-maker and even the business community appeared to shift.”

And finally “late in the year, the government finally reacted”:

In a year that the Herald was heavily criticised for it’s click-bait headlines and increasing reliance trivia we should acknowledge that they retain a commitment to some in depth investigative reporting, albeit with reducing resources.


NZH bio on Nippert:

A Fulbright scholar with a masters from the Columbia School of Journalism in New York, Matt has spent the past decade in newsbreaking roles at the New Zealand Listener, National Business Review, Herald on Sunday and the Sunday Star-Times before joining the Herald in 2014. His work has won numerous awards and he is the reigning Canon reporter of the year.

His stories include horrific abuse at a state-run boys home on Great Barrier Island, malfeasance at South Canterbury Finance, systematic tax avoidance by multinational companies, and the sudden resignation of justice minister Judith Collins.

Nippert has a regular sideline as a broadcast commentator and is one of only a few journalists who honestly enjoys numbers and spreadsheets.

Last year Nippert won Canon media awards for his efforts:

  • Reporter – Business Matt Nippert – The New Zealand Herald
  • Reporter of the Year Matt Nippert – The New Zealand Herald