A lot of people have been saying online that they think John Campbell should join Hilary Barry as a new co host of Seven Sharp. Though it is possible that he could go, I think this is unlikely for several reasons, though I actually have no clue as to what he will do, this is all my theory.
Firstly, a lot of effort and equipment purchase went into the creation of Checkpoint with John Campbell. This is RNZ’s first multi-platform show that is radio with pictures! It broadcasts out live over the internet, on Sky, on Freeview and Vodafone, over the radio and is available to watch or listen to via video or podcast afterwards.
Secondly, Checkpoint with John Campbell is very much in the spirit of Campbell Live. Seven Sharp has been more of an infotainment show and we all know that John Campbell has already refused to co-host a lighter weight current affairs show while he was at MediaWorks. Even if they change the nature of this new show, there is no guarantee that he will end up with a show that is as close to Campbell Live as the one he has got now.
His current show is much longer than Seven Sharp which is only 30 minutes long and, with commercials, works out to be approximately 22 minutes long. Checkpoint runs for 90 minutes and, programme promos aside, is commerical free. This allows John to have a show that has greater flexibility with its format and gives him more time to cover more topics.
Checkpoint with John Campbell has a very promising future. Judging by the GFK radio survey results, Checkpoint seems to have similar audience numbers to Campbell Live. These numbers can only improve once RNZ gets its new public service TV channel where it is highly likely that Checkpoint will become a fully fledged TV show in addition to its various other media.
Finally, Radio New Zealand has a better reputation, in New Zealand, as a broadcaster than Television New Zealand at the moment. John is winning a lot of awards for his work at RNZ. His latest award from the Association for International Broadcasting for Best Presenter of the Year for Audio! In fact, many presenters win awards for their journalism at RNZ. Surely this is a place where is he proud to have such a prominent role! He also gets to work with Pip Keane and Carol Hirschfeld!
All in all, I think that John Campbell has every reason to feel happy at RNZ, but that’s just me, I don’t know what’s afoot with him moving or not.