$55m for public interest journalism enough to bring Māori issues to light?

By Te Ao - Māori News

The government has announced a new $55 million dollar fund to support journalism in Aotearoa.

The fund is for public interest content that would otherwise not be made by media companies. It is also designed to support media organisations fighting for survival as revenues decline because of the internet.

The money is from the $50 billion Covid-19 fund created in last year's Budget and will be administered by New Zealand on Air.

Māori journalist and media commentator Scott Campbell says Māori media has been "underserved" and argues this fund could help bring more Māori issues to mainstream news. 

"Taking nothing away from Māori Television and Te Karere but, across the mainstream networks, we just don't have Māori issues covered very well." 

Campbell says this fund is something that more 'grassroots' media outlets could potentially access to serve their local iwi and hapū also.

"When you look at the places that are really struggling - they are the publications and media outlets that serve our Māori people, like Kawerau, Opotiki - those places. So this fund is something they can apply for and create content that mainstream media won't cover.