Home' Greymouth Star : April 7th 2017 Contents Greymouth Star
4 - Friday, April 7, 2017
We appreciate the value of the Letters to the Editor
column as a public forum for West Coasters and
welcome your opinion and suggestions.
Letters may be submitted by post, fax or e-mail and
must include your name, address, phone number
and — except for e-mails — your signature. Noms
de plume are not accepted.
Please keep your letters honest, respectful and
within 300 words. Letter writers will generally not
be published more often than weekly. The Editor
reserves the right to edit or not publish letters,
especially those that are offensive or too long.
Post to PO Box 3, Greymouth, fax to 768 6205 or
e-mail to email@example.com
uLetters to the editor
1739 - Dick Turpin, English highwayman, is
hanged for murder at York.
1862 - In US Civil War, the Union
army under General Ulysses S Grant
defeats the Confederates at the
Battle of Shiloh in Tennessee.
1943 - The drug LSD is first
produced in Basel, Switzerland, by
1947 - Death of Henry Ford,
automotive and manufacturing
1949 - The Rodgers and Hammerstein musical
South Pacific opens on Broadway.
1966 - US hydrogen bomb lost from bomber
is recovered off coast of Spain.
1990 - Scandinavian Star, a Bahamas-
registered ferry operated by the Da No Line,
catches fire while on a journey between Norway
and Denmark; 158 die.
2014 - Media personality Peaches Geldof,
daughter of Irish singer Bob Geldof, dies aged
25 of a heroin overdose.
uWest Coast yesteryear
uToday in history
William Wordsworth, English poet (1770-
1850); Sir David Low, New Zealand cartoonist
(1891-1964); Billie Holiday,
US blues singer (1915-1959);
Ravi Shankar, Indian musician
(1920-2012); James Garner, US
actor (1928-2014); Francis Ford
Coppola, US film director (1939-);
David Frost, British tv personality
(1939-2013); John Oates, US singer
(1949-); Janis Ian, US singer (1951-); Jackie
Chan, Hong Kong movie star (1954-); Russell
Crowe, New Zealand-born actor (1964-) .
“ Real generosity toward the future consists of
giving all to what is present.” — Albert Camus,
Algerian-born French writer (1913-1960).
“ Like good stewards of the manifold grace of
God, ser ve one another with whatever gift each
of you has received.” — (1 Peter 4:10).
The second double
road fatality on the
West Coast in less
than a week occurred
four miles north of Hokitika at 11 o’clock last
night. Killed were Eleanor Frances Douglas,
married of Hokitika and Anthony David
Carmichael, 25, married, of O xford. In the
Westland Hospital in a satisfactory condition
are the husband of the dead woman William
Henry Douglas and Arthur Stubbs, 17, of
The accident occurred when the car in which
the four people were travelling crashed through
the Hou Hou bridge and crashed into a creek.
An eyewitness said this morning the car hit
the bridge then rolled over on its roof into the
Mr Carmichael was the son-in-law of Mr
and Mrs Douglas with whom he was staying.
He owned a farm at Oxford. Mr Stubbs
worked for him.
The Greymouth Hospital Board will have
to adopt strong measures to make ends meet
this financial year. It will have to prune its
normal spending by several thousands of
pounds. The board will meet on Wednesday
night to examine the best ways to deal with the
The withdrawal of government assistance in
paying ordinary running costs and a reduction
in allocations to the West Coast board have
caused the current squeeze.
“The board will have to spend several
thousands of pounds less than previously and
at the same time absorb the usual expenses,”
board secretary Mr K A O’Leary said today. At
this stage there was no suggestion of closing
any wards, a proposal being considered by the
Otago Hospital Board which is also facing
uFood for thought
Printed and published by the
Greymouth Evening Star Co Limited
3 Werita Street, PO Box 3, Greymouth
03 769 7900 (office)
769 7913 (editorial)
768 6205 (fax)
03 769 7913
03 755 8422
ore than 90,000
could quit their Sky
year, according to
new data that shows
the country’s telecommunications and
on-line video content industries are at a
Exclusive research provided to
Newsroom reveals nearly half of New
Zealanders now watch video on-line,
and predicts that skyrocketing demand
for video content is beginning to drive
demand for cheaper and faster internet
Trace Research Ltd’s Andrew Zhu
said the data shows Asian consumers
are leading the charge in demand for
ultra-high definition content. He said
this content requires 4K televisions and
predicted increasing sales of the high tech
The research puts weight behind
recent manoeuvring of Internet Service
Providers (ISPs) trying to position
themselves as content providers, too.
Spark now gives customers free Netflix
with their broadband despite already
having its own on-demand viewing
service; Trustpower is giving away free
4K televisions to new customers, and
Vodafone and Sky have not yet given
up on plans to merge despite getting
the thumbs down from the Commerce
The data, compiled from an on-
line sur vey of more than a thousand
consumers in February, shows how
rapidly consumer behaviour is changing
— a nd how the traditional telco and
media models need to adapt to catch up.
Some of the key findings included:
Nearly half of people watch video on-
line; led by millennials who watch nearly
80% of their video content on-line.
Only 6.8% of households have 4K
capable tvs, but 15% of Asian families do.
A further 17% said they would likely
buy a 4K tv in the next year.
Sky subscriptions are falling, with just
37.5% of households found to have the
Of those Sky subscribers, 16%
planned to cancel their subscriptions this
You Tube is the most accessed video
streaming site, with 70.2% of viewers
using it followed by Netflix at 32.4%.
51.8% use TVNZ On Demand, but
only 26.2% use competitor Three Now.
Households have an average of eight
video-capable devices, and people watch
an average of three hours video each day.
Internet tv is the most popular way
of viewing on-line content with 35.6% of
Tv series are the most popular type of
content, with 42% of viewers choosing to
Zhu said the implications of the survey ’s
findings were “huge”. It painted two
industries on the cusp of “transformation”
and vying for market share.
“Companies are trying to position
themselves not only as ISPs but also as
“They are all trying to align themselves
with media companies. The higher band
width video content means consumers
need to download more data which
means unlimited data consumption will
be an issue.
“More people will consume more data
and in the past looking at data allowance,
that went to unlimited so what ’s next?
Speed. High definition content needs
Zhu said the data was gathered for a
commercial client — but was primarily
looking at the awareness of, and demand
“4K awareness is increasing,” he said.
“Mainly with millennials, but it is the
people aged 30-to 39 years old who have
the highest adoption rate.”
As sur vey respondents signalled intent
to purchase the devices in the next year,
up to 30,000 of the televisions could be
sold in New Zealand.
The devices were most popular
with Asian demographics and new
immigrants, said Zhu.
He expected demand for ultra high
definition content to also increase, which
would drive demand for faster internet
and more bandwidth.
“The biggest barrier for many to adopt
4K tv is their bandwidth.”
He said New Zealand had the
infrastructure to supply faster internet,
but unlimited data plans were not as
affordable as international markets where
4K content was already widely adopted.
Trustpower was one company
capitalising on this, he said.
The company offered a promotion
where customers received a free high
quality 4K television to join the power
and internet provider.
The same could be said for Spark,
which has recently offered free Netflix
to internet customers — despite having
its own on-demand viewing ser vice
Lightbox was launched as “New
Zealand’s version of Netflix” in 2014
before the actual Netflix and other
international competitors became legally
It has failed to become a market-leading
on-demand ser vice, according to the
Only a quarter of Spark customers
surveyed accessed Lightbox in the last
year, despite receiving it free with their
Spark ser vices.
Only 7.4% of Vodafone customers
However, Netflix was popular,
independent of which ISP consumers
signed up with.
Zhu said it was important to note that
the Spark-Netflix partnership happened
after the Trace research was conducted.
However, Netflix was used by 70.1% of
Vodafone customers and 68.4% of Spark
customers questioned in the February
When it came to the competition
between market leaders Spark and
Vodafone, Zhu said sur vey results had
some interesting implications for the two
“Spark has made a very smart move
(partnering with Netflix). Lightbox has
not proven to be successful which might
suggest why they are offering Netflix.”
The diminishing popularity of Sky,
which used to have its ser vices in about
half of all New Zealand households, was
also interesting, said Zhu.
“If I was Vodafone I would be relieved
that the Commerce Commission
declined their merger. This data shows
Vodafone would be silly to partner with
Sky. They would have to spend more
money turning Sky’s digital media to a
more on-line viewing platform.”
The data showed that Sky was in 37.5%
of the households of survey respondents,
with 16.5% of those planning to cancel
the ser vice this year.
If extrapolated to the New Zealand
population, this could amount to 90,000
lost subscribers — a trend in line with
Sky’s own reporting of customer losses of
45,000 subscribers in the six months to
“Based on findings from this research,
the proposed merger might not give
Vodafone any advantage because video
streaming has become the new trend and
none of Sky’s video streaming ser vice has
a high penetration rate.”
Developments in the ISP and on-line
content sectors were rapid, which meant
it was a critical time for companies to act,
“The sectors are moving really fast,
Netflix could have potentially secured
Spark’s place in the on-line video space
which could be very, very good for them.
“ Vodafone is different, it needs to move
to video streaming and having a partner
that is going to facilitate that.”
Some of the potential areas for
expansion could be in partnerships with
You Tube or on platforms that allowed
viewers to interact with content more,
for example by leaving comments and
sharing on social media.
The research was based on an on-line
survey distributed to New Zealand
residents through a consumer research
panel between February 12 and 17.
It is based on a sample size of 1003
valid responses of adults aged 18 years or
over, and made up of 48.7% males and
Demographic weightings were applied
using 2013 census population and
household distributions and the margin
of error is +/-3% at a 95% confidence
level. — Newsroom
On-line video skyrockets
DWC: get back on
Well, Development West Coast has
already run off the rails so the Kingston
Flyer could get them back on track.
What a great thing, working the steam
train in with the Tranz Alpine to keep
people on the West Coast longer. But
going by DWC’s track record I can not see
Also, DWC should be looking at our two
troubled rest homes in Greymouth.
Some of us remember when DWC was
set up to create employment on the Coast
when native logging stopped. But we
keep getting things like a honey business
which takes our honey off the Coast and
processes it in Blenheim and $12 million
in Cranley Farms (what a joke).
So, get back on track DWC and start
doing what you are well paid for.
DOC camping fees
On a recent camping trip I noticed
some clowns at DOC have hiked the
prices of the camp fees, in some cases
I know that the National Government,
like everything else, has cut budgets to
make themselves look good, but this is
over the top. I thought they are trying to
cut down on freedom camping.
Hikes like this are chasing them down
the road to use our bush as a toilet and
rubbish dump. After all, most DOC
camps have minimal amenities so why
charge so much? These hikes have taken
a lot of New Zealand families’ camping
holiday away from them as they can not
afford to stay as the children’s prices have
hiked as well.
So, at the end of the day let ’s all have
a freedom camping holiday; it would be
cheaper to pay council fines.
Recently at Lake Mahinapua I watched
as people came in, set up their camp and
went over to pay, came back, packed up
left, no doubt to park down the road
and use our so-called ‘clean, green’ bush
as their toilet and rubbish dump.
So good on ya dumb DOC — take
more away from us all and make
everybody cr..p in the bush. After all, the
camps are no better than before the price
I have always held a view that in the
future wars will be fought over water.
New Zealand, but especially the West
Coast, sits on a goldmine of fresh, pure
water. We can not just give it away to
The Coast has been raped of its assets
over the past 150 years. Gold, coal, timber
and now water? If royalties had been
placed on the past resources we would
now live in the richest province in New
Saudi Arabia is dripping in wealth and
not because they gave their oil away.
Royalties have been placed on foreign
companies that pump the oil out of the
ground. The world will move on one day
from oil, but freshwater is required by us
The councils have to draw a line in the
sand and say ‘no more extraction without
royalties coming back to the West Coast
Resource consent payments and
employment opportunities are a by-
product of what could make the Coast
rich. The current applicants for water
resource consents, Okuru Enterprises,
could sell this company to an overseas
interest at the drop of a hat once it is up
As far as ownership of water goes. In
my view, if it flows out of the mountains
on the West Coast it belongs to the
people of the West Coast, and possession
is nine-tenths of the law. Councillors
represent the people of the West Coast.
Do not give the water away.
It will take central government years to
come up with a plan. We need to act
The councils have to find a way to
think beyond making a quick buck
with approving a consent. Soon, other
companies will be lining up to export
our ‘pot of gold ’. The ground rules need
to be set now, otherwise we will continue
to sit here in a depressed economy while
others go laughing all the way to the
Thank you for posting in ‘ West Coast
Yesteryears’ on March 20 an article about
the Grenadiers Marching Team.
I was the leader mentioned in the
article. At the time, I never thought that
50 years later I would still be enjoying
marching for the Grenadiers Marching
Team, as are two of the ladies, who were
judges at the time.
I wish to thank the young boy who
found my ring in the New World car
park and handed it in to the store. Your
honesty is a tribute to your parents and to
you. Thank you so much.
A New Zealand apple has left
the growers of 32 rival varieties
green with envy after being voted
The Envy apple outpolled
rivals, such as the Granny Smith,
Honeycrisp and Fuji, in the
competition run by the United
States Apple Association.
Calling on American apple fans
to vote for the best variety, the
competition ran for five weeks in
February and March.
“It was fun to see apple fans’
passion for their favourite varieties
play out on social media. Congrats
however to Envy,” US Apple
Association’s Korenna Wilson
Developed by New Zealand
government-owned agency Plant
and Food Research, the Envy was
bred naturally by crossing Braeburn
with Royal Gala apples.
And with new season New
Zealand-grown Envys appearing
in stores this month and more than
two million expected to be harvested
in the US alone by 2020, New
Zealanders should have plenty of
help keeping the doctor away.
— New Zealand Herald
New Zealand apple voted US favourite
Links Archive April 6th 2017 April 8th 2017 Navigation Previous Page Next Page