The Campbell Live ratings lie, Key becomes a TV critic & how TVNZ rigs the game



MediaWorks claim that threatening to axe Campbell Live is a commercial decision and not a political decision.


Here are the comparable ratings for Campbell Live


…as you can clearly see, Campbell Live IS THE TOP TV3 show that is pulling more viewers in their time slot than any other show. Claiming their top show isn’t rating well enough is simply not true. Campbell Live takes a greater percentage of viewers than 3 News, Paul Henry, TV3 and the midday news.

This isn’t political? I feel there’s a Tui billboard in that.

John Key decided to add ‘TV Critic’ to his CV yesterday by describing Campbell Live as entertainment that didn’t have a job to hold the PM to account.

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Just think about the sentiment in that comment from Key. The TV Show that has been at the forefront of holding him to account is written off by the PM as lite entertainment and told it’s not their job to hold him to account?

Isn’t that the short of shit the leader of Russia would say?

Key spies like Nixon and threatens like Putin.

It’s not the PMs role to publicly define a Journalist’s job when that Journalist has been one of the most critical voices. Let’s not forget, this is a PM who ran a dirty ops team from his office, while colluding with the Secret Intelligence Services to smear the Leader of the Opposition months out from the 2011 election, while passing vast new State Agency Surveillance powers, while lying about those mass surveillance powers, while privatising social infrastructure, while borrowing billions in tax cuts for the rich, while lowering worker rights, while handing out vast corporate welfare, while killing off public broadcasting, while enriching the rich, while building a property bubble to create false wealth, while just being a dick sometimes and as such demands intense scrutiny.

We crucified Helen Clark for signing a painting she didn’t paint, Key is not a Prime Minister who should be facing less critical public attention – he should be facing vastly more of it.

With the TPPA around the corner, with economic tides turning, with a media watchdog muzzled into a lap dog, with pollution stats being manipulated to hide our gas emissions, with water being undemocratically seized by farming interests, with big oil calling the shots we require genuine debate with fearless urgency. If the vast ocean of apathetic consumer addicts don’t care – then it’s the skill of the broadcaster to make them care.

John Campbell has that ability.

So is the game rigged against Campbell Live? Bill Ralston at last nights excellent Table Talk event at IKA made some damning points on TV3s marketing of Campbell Live, that they have been set up to fail because the network is not driving mass promotion of Campbell Live.

Here’s their website…

Screen Shot 2015-04-15 at 8.26.39 am


…Campbell Live is their biggest show, yet look at the nothing promotion it is getting on their home page.

There are other ways the game has been rigged against Campbell Live. The 300 000 NZers with hearing problems only have Seven Sharp and Shortland Street to watch because funding for subtitles on Campbell Live has not been allowed.

So those with hearing disabilities who may have much more sympathy for the activism of Campbell Live are barred from joining his audience and have to stick with Hosking or a dreary old drama trying to be young like Shortland St, and let’s be blunt, it’s easy to get Mike Hosking and a dreary old drama trying to be young mixed up.

Campbell Live fights on a slanted battlefield, given minimal publicity support by their network and is gated off from a significant part of the audience.

That Campbell Live can do what they do with the pittance they’ve got is testament to the dedication of the journalists he works with.

You can sign the petition here.




  1. In my office last night I heard three young journalists ALL say they got inspired to be a journalist by watching Campbell Live

  2. Agree with all you say Martyn, except I would expect the Campbell Live stats for Monday the 13th of April to be up more that say the average over the last month, as a result of the push for viewers to watch Campbell Live? Can you get your hands on a a monthly average figure for bars in this graph? That would be much more informative for us all. Cheers Gerry

  3. Yes some of the things Mr Key says are a worry as they appear to follow the same theme of a 20th century leader who tried to conquer the world and lost .Just read how he rose to power by brainwashing a population and looking at New Zealand there appears not much difference .

    • “Not much difference”

      I know what hyperbole is but this takes the cake. Suggest you double your medication dose today.

      • I suggest you stop suppin on that there whiskey and get some better diet in to yer other than them hominy grits y’all feedin on.

        And while your at it – get an education , mate.

        Your lack of history and the ability to learn from it is appallingly embarrassing.

        People such as yourself become a liability when govts transform into an early passive dictatorship…and as usual – its concerned people like Allan who have to rescue you and your ilk from your lazy , disinterested , sycophantic gutless selves to bring order back into a society.

        Grow a brain mate , please.

        Or at least stop supping on that whiskey.

  4. Hi Martyn,
    I’d like to post that comparative viewership graphic to my FB, but would like to know the source first.
    Cheers and keep on fighting the good fight!

  5. Hilarious image / deeply disturbing Post .
    Anybody got any idea just when us humans might just get up , get out there and get our hands dirty ?

  6. Wow! And you claim TV3 manipulates the statistics. That has got to be one of the most misleading graphs I have ever seen. I’m with Gerry on this. Provide some more data over an extended period of time rather than cheery picking one particular date.

    • “Provide some more data over an extended period of time rather than cheery picking one particular date.”

      Why? What would be the point? You ignore any data presented to you anyway. Something we’ve learned over the last few years with your inane demands for information – and never following through with any thoughtful consideration.

      If the data is wrong, let’s try something novel: present your counter-data.

      Otherwise you’re simply wasting everyone’s time.

      • Why is it that the demand for Proof comes from the far right and yet the burden of proof always has to lie with the left?

        Indeed I would ask, why do we even bother talking to them?
        But I know it’s not their benefit the information is provided, it’s for people who care but are denied access to that information.
        By the very ones asking for it, nay, demanding it.

    • Least with Putin he acts like a strongman.

      Key acts like a viscous bitchy lying little nerd taking revenge on all the kids who picked on him when he was at school.

  7. Key the media critic is recommending people watch shows like Seven Sharp.

    Yes that’s right folks, watch the National Party Master of Ceremonies, none other than the obsequious Mike Hosking who will never ever criticise Key or National, the same idiot savant (he does exceptional things with hair gel) who thinks Auckland’s housing market is a “success”.

    National know that they are where they are in the polls because of a near total media black out in terms of criticism and a near total media fanfare in regard to Nationalspulbic relations. With National we now know what it was like propaganda wise, to live behind the “Iron Curtain” back in the day!

  8. Rather disingenuous use of data, comparing last nights data with say the 1st of April evidences a significant increase in viewers . The data from the 1st of April certainly doesn’t support your narrative here.

    Comparing two dates would suggest a spike in viewers solely due to the review (the review based off data not unlike that of the 1 April no doubt).

    Time will tell whether those viewers who arrived last week will remain or lose interest and leave once the dust settles. If the latter then the initial grounds for a review would seem logical.

    • Yeah, it was also a disingenuous use of data to have taken Campbell Live ratings from the period of the World Cup Cricket, when most of NZ were tuned in to that, but hey – Quiet in the cheap seats, eh?

      • Cricket World Cup ended on the 29th of March, not sure how that would influence data for the 1st of April if we are looking at single day figures as per the example above?

  9. Key clearly wants Campbell, out! He wants to ensure all the current affairs programs are stacked with National supporters to assist his next election campaign. Mike Hosking will be alright – he is a “Key” man – that became very obvious during his interviews leading up to last year’s election. He is clearly biased and if NZ had a neutral news media, he would not have been placed in that situation. Key will be being steered by Steven Joyce, who no doubt has aspirations for the top job as well. “Dirty politics” will pale into insignificance once these two get going together leading into our next election. This is just the start..

  10. Key spies like Nixon and threatens like Putin.

    Good line!

    Back to the ratings only approx 600 households are apparently measured so against the approx 4,471,000 NZer’s. It is such a low sample size and not automated so I would take any ratings information with a grain of salt. There is no 2nd polls so can not be used to measure any accuracy.

    However I have no doubt that Campbell for political reasons is under rated and the powers that be want him gone.

    It would not surprise me if Campbell has more viewers than Seven Sharp and also they are a younger demographic.

  11. When I go onto my iPad I use the ‘3 now’ app to view shows on demand, and Campbell live is nowhere to be seen on the homepage.. You have to searching for it. Scroll down the homepage though and there are multiple links to Henry’s show, xfactor, bachelor etc, even 3 news.

  12. Can anyone tell me just HOW they get the ratings? I can safely say that no-one has every rung me to ask what I was watching. Ever.

  13. A+ ,Martyn , A+.

    Yeah , drop your top show ,drop your sponsor ,and wow ,that’s a top business decision .

    Campbell just helped raise 2 million for Vanu Atu.He helped 6 out of 7 American fast food chains drop zero hour contracts , he’s helped out 250,000 underfed kiwi kids .And lets hope he gets a crack at the TPPA.

    He has the only true reality tv, because he talks to real people ,about real problems,with real compassion ,and real solutions.

    Should the queen give John Key a knighthood( to a man who aims to turn NZ in the 51st State of America for rich corporate’s),or to John Campbell for embracing and celebrating his country’s aspirations in a balanced fair way ? No contest .Sir John Campbell .Ten years of service means he’s earned it .

    If Campbell exits journalism as a result of a nationals secret agenda to control all MSM ,it may backfire badly for the right. With Campbell’s significant following he may become even more dangerous if he transitions to politics……

    “From the ashes does the phoenix arise “.

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