Maori Television


Haere Mai, Haere Mai, Haere Mai! Maori Television is the first free-to-air Maori language (te reo) channel in New Zealand.

As their website says, ‘Māori Television is a servant of the Māori language and culture, and aims to become the leader in increasing knowledge and understanding of the Māori world for all New Zealanders.’

I’m ‘Pakeha’ (a Maori word used by Maori and many non-Maori NZers, like me, to identify non-Maori NZers) and for me watching Maori TV opens up a whole new way of seeing NZ through another culture’s eyes.

Kia kaha!


BBC ONE ident featuring Haka angers some Maori

(from One News, 8 Apr ’02)

BBC ONE, one of the most popular channels in Britain, is using a Haka as part of a new promotional campaign and that has upset critics in New Zealand.

The Haka is one of eight BBC promotions featuring international dances like salsa, hip hop, and ballet. The promo says that whatever your age, wherever you live, and whoever you are, rhythm and movement are common, and it wants the BBC channel to have the same appeal.At the centre of the controversy is Joseph Hutley who is featured performing the Haka, but the clip has put him – and his 14 Welsh mates – at the centre of a cultural storm.

“I don’t know what the problem is here in New Zealand, they should be happy that it’s being promoted in such a way. BBC news is big news, its huge,” says Paki Hutley, Joseph Hutley’s mother.

But critics of the promo say that Maori were not consulted before the images were used.

“Maori imagery has become fashionable nationally and internationally, and the claimants would like to be consulted about these issues,” says New Zealand lawyer Maui Solomon.

Ka Mate Ka Mate dates back to the days of Te Rauparaha, and since then it has evolved into a national icon, but its use by outsiders has always been controversial.

And Solomon maintains that the controversy can only stop if the New Zealand government steps in.

“The protocol between the New Zealand government and other government nations states that we recognise Maori knowledge, designs and symbols,” Solomon says.

However, despite the protestations from New Zealand, the BBC says that it will not alter or take the promotion off air.

(The BBC ident can be viewed here)



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