Māori Perceptions of Māori Television: An Empirical Study
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The Māori Television Service (MTS) is described as New Zealand's Indigenous broadcaster. Since its launch in 2004, the network has been redefining the New Zealand mediasphere, with a wide range of locally produced and international programming in both te reo Māori and English. MTS arose out of thirty years of relentless campaigning from Māori, who argued Māori language and culture is a living taonga and the New Zealand government must protect it. As a direct result of colonisation, te ao Māori was brought to the brink of extinction and some Māori with forsight, understood the televisual space would be an ideal medium for its preservation. Moreover, Māori are particularly skilled in the art of whaikōrero and television broadcasting presents the opportunity to communicate Māori stories from Māori perspectives through oration. Furthermore, a Māori presence within the New Zealand mediascape is important, for not only Māori and their position as tangata whenua, but for the promotion of New Zealand's unique national identity; it is the only differentiating factor from other post-colonial nations. Given the context in which MTS arose, the only objective of this study is to examine Māori perceptions of Māori Television.