Today marked the end of a broadcasting era, with TVNZ 7 officially switching off at midnight. With tonight’s switch-off, New Zealand is one of only two countries in the OECD without a public service television channel – the other being Mexico. From 7:00am this morning, channel 7 on Freeview will be occupied by TV One Plus 1, a timeshift of TV One by one hour. On Sky, channel 77 will switch off, with channel 81 becoming the home of TV One Plus 1 – placing it in its own numeric bracket on the platform.
TVNZ 7 launched on the Freeview platform on 30th March 2008, and also served as a lure for people to switch over to the digital service. On 1st July 2009, TVNZ 7 and fellow channel TVNZ 6 were added to the Sky platform (on channels 16 and 77 respectively).
Popular TV show Media 7 will move to TV3 in August, taking up the name of Media 3. The fate of other popular shows, such as Back Benches, is not yet known, although it is assumed that existing factual content will make its way back to TV One.
Two videos showcasing the unfortunate close of TVNZ 7 – the final TVNZ News Now bulletin at 11:00pm, and the final moments of the channel, leading up to midnight – will be available soon. I just need to convert them and get them up on YouTube. Here’s a video of TVNZ 7′s close, courtesy of Morgan on the Facebook page:
Goodbye, TVNZ 7 – we’ll miss you! It’s an absolute shame that this government couldn’t fund the continuation of this great channel.