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Māori media not a classroom

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Māori broadcasters feel the expectations on them to revive the Māori language are too high - and not matched by the funding on offer.

Hineani Melbourne, the chair of Māori screen workers group Ngā Aho Whakaari, says consultation on the current Māori Media Shift Review has raised long standing concerns about the weight put on Māori creatives.

She says while proposals for mainstream programming an be relatively brief, kaupapa Māori programmers are asked to set out their Māori language plan and prove they can make some impact.

"We’re not teachers. Our job is to entertain and to give information, encourage our people to think bigger. Some of the reo speakers at the hui said they don't want a Māori language education, they want to watch television and be able to laugh and cry and be informed like everybody else," Ms Melbourne says.

The Māori media sector hasn’t had a funding increase in more than a decade.

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