It’s been a long time since I have written a blog, as I now write articles for Android Mobile NZ (AMNZ).
Recently I published an article for AMNZ, whereby I conducted comprehensive Speed Testing around Hamilton, New Zealand, between Vodafone NZ & Telecom XT, using my Samsung Galaxy S II. The tests comprised of speedtest.net tests completed both Nationally & Internationally, plus FTP Downloads & Ping Testing.
Quite some time ago, I completed a Speed Test Report between Vodafone NZ & Telecom XT around Hamilton & some other locations & this can be read here:
First of all, I would like to state, that I am all for employees trying to improve their terms & conditions, but the MEAA got it completely wrong, in my opinion.
From a Professional standpoint, I have been practicing as a Registered Nurse for over 14 years now & I have actively partaken in protest marches, in support of obtaining better terms & conditions & been involved in Industrial Strike action, when the negotiations were not achieving what the Nurses Union Members (NZNO) wanted to achieve. This action, was always taken as a last desperate bid to improve terms, conditions & pay for nurses collectively, who have traditionally been paid very poorly, when compared to other professions in New Zealand.
The below statement, is my personal opinion, on how Industrial Action by the New Zealand Actors Equity & the MEAA nearly “potentially” derailed the New Zealand Movie & Tourism Industries
The New Zealand Actors Equity (membership of around 600 actors) asked the Australian MEAA to assist them with having “potential” negotiations (they never happened – but read on to see why) with the Producers/Film Studios of The Hobbit production.
However – Australian MEAA Leader – Simon Whipp made (according to various reports) – what was a unilateral decision to Blacklist/Boycott The Hobbit movie production before attempting to go to the table & have negotiations (which he destroyed all possibility of happening, due to the Blacklisting announcement).
Now – its little wonder why the Studio/Producers never bothered to try & negotiate with these people, as they had completely destroyed any good faith that may have been there in the first place, by blacklisting the production from word go.
Lastly, but certainly not least – Simon Whipp was interviewed on Campbell Live last week & he was asked this question (amongst others) “Would you feel any guilt if The Hobbit was not filmed in New Zealand” & he answered “No”, without hesitation. Now this indicates two things:
A) He seemingly doesn’t really care about the New Zealand actors he was representing
B) He doesn’t care about what was, at the time, the very real possibility of not only The Hobbit being filmed offshore, but the entire Film Industry & Tourism Industry of New Zealand be put at the risk of imploding upon itself.
Thank goodness this never happened & full credit to Sir Peter Jackson & John Key for brokering a fantastic deal for New Zealand!
Written by Grant Smith – The Hobbit Fan
Associated Press coverage, related to The Hobbit:
The Hobbit Rally – Buildup:
The Hobbit Rally:
The following speech was read on the day of The Hobbit Rally across New Zealand before any Media were advised about it & the last few sentences were directed specifically towards the people who turned out for the rally….
I have always seen the New Zealand film industry as a large, noisy, growing family. And I have always known the debt of gratitude I owe to the talented people who make up that family: from the grips to the gaffers, drivers to set builders, costume makers to camera operators, model makers, sound recordists, editors, digital effects artists, and of course – the many wonderful kiwi actors who help to bring our films to life.
All these people care deeply about our industry; they love their work, they love making films and being part of a creative community. That love ends up on screen, and I truly believe it sets our films apart from those made in any other country. You cannot buy passion and commitment – it is a precious energy, freely given, and it is the life blood of our industry.
I believe the Kiwi way of doing things should be protected and celebrated. Turning us into another State of Australia, under the sway of a destructive organisation, carries the very real risk of destroying the great big heart that beats inside our films.
As an industry we are perfectly well equipped, through our various guilds, to provide excellent terms and conditions for all our film workers. If there are problems, it is up to us to use our guilds to resolve them – that is what they are there for. We don’t open the door to an Australian trade union, who will never put the interests of Kiwis first, and invest that union with the power to destroy everything we have built.
On behalf of all those involved in trying to get The Hobbit off the ground , I would like to thank the many people who have taken the time to contact us. Every card, every letter, every email reminds us just how much people care. It has been incredibly heartening to read your messages of support. And a special thank you to the fans, whose enthusiasm for these films has never wavered, even in the darkest hours.
Lastly, I want to thank each and every person who has come here today. This is your rally, it is your moment to let your voice be heard, and I know your message to the studio will not go un-noticed.
You have said loudly and clearly New Zealand is where The Hobbit films should be made; their creative DNA is here.
This is where Middle-earth was born and this is where it should stay.
I managed to get a quote & a picture (third from the far left, arms thrust in the air, wearing a black shirt) of myself in the following article: