The ''New Zealand Listener'' is a weekly New Zealand magazine that covers the political, cultural and literary life of New Zealand by featuring a variety of topics, including current events, politics, social issues, health, technology, arts, food, culture and entertainment. The Bauer Media Group closed ''The Listener'' in April 2020 as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic in New Zealand. In June 2020, Mercury Capital acquired the magazine as part of its purchase of Bauer Media's former Australia and New Zealand assets.


''The Listener'' was first published in June 1939 as a weekly broadcasting guide for radio listeners, and the first issue was distributed free to 380,000 households. First edited by Oliver Duff then from June 1949 M. H. Holcroft, it originally had a monopoly on the publication of upcoming television and radio programmes. In the 1980s it lost that monopoly, but despite the increase in competition since that time, it was still one of the top selling magazines in the country. It was privatised in 1990 and was published by Bauer Media Group until the magazine's closure in early 2020. Pamela Stirling was the editor since 2004, and by 2018 readership was 197,000 with a circulation of 45,262. From 2004 to 2009, the ''Listener'' produced an annual ''New Zealand Listener'' Power List of the 50 most powerful people in New Zealand. It also published the Best 100 Books, Best 50 Kids Books, and Best Cookbooks, every November/December. Notable writers to have had their work published in the Listener include James K. Baxter, Janet Frame and Maurice Shadbolt.

Closure and reboot, 2020

On 2 April 2020, the Bauer Media Group announced the closing of many of its New Zealand and Australian publications including ''The Listener'' due to the continued loss of advertising revenue, hastened by the COVID-19 pandemic. Prior to that, the weekly current affairs printed magazine was billed as 'New Zealand's best-selling current affairs magazine with a per capita circulation higher than ''Time'', the ''New Yorker'' and ''Spectator. On 17 June 2020, Australian investment company Mercury Capital purchased ''The Listener'' as part of its acquisition of Bauer Media's Australia and New Zealand assets. On 17 July, Mercury Capital announced that it would resume publishing ''The Listener'' and other former Bauer publications, but as of mid-August none had eventuated. In late September 2020, Mercury Capital rebranded Bauer Media as Are Media, which took over publication of ''The Listener''.


* Oliver Duff (1939–1949) *M. H. Holcroft (1949–1967; 1972–1973) *Alexander McLeod (1967–1972) *Ian Cross (1973–1977) *Tony Reid (1977–1980) *Peter Stewart (1980–1983; 1987–1989) *David Beatson (1984–1989) *Geoff Baylis (1989–1995) *Jenny Wheeler (1995–1997) *Terry Snow *Paul Little *Finlay Macdonald (1998–2003) * Pamela Stirling (2004–current)

Regular writers/journalists

*Donna Chisholm * Bill Ralston * Nicky Pellegrino *Sally Blundell *Paul Thomas (writer) *Jane Clifton *Russell Baillie, Books & Culture Editor *Fiona Rae * Michael Cooper * Clare de Lore * Peter Griffin *Marc Wilson, psychology columnist *Paul Thomas, sports columnist *Joanne Black
Jennifer Bowden
*Greg Dixon *Michele Hewitson *Mark Broatch * Rose McIver *Andrew Anthony *Sam Neill *Louise Chunn *Cathrin Schaer *Bernard Lagan

Regular cartoonists/illustrators/photographers

*Chris Slane (cartoonist) *Anthony Ellison (cartoonist) *Andrew Tristram (cartoonist) *Ken Downie (photographer) *Simon Young (photographer) *Hagen Hopkins (photographer)

See also

* Media in New Zealand * List of print media in New Zealand


External links

* {{Are Media Category:1939 establishments in New Zealand Category:2020 disestablishments in New Zealand Category:Literary magazines published in New Zealand Category:Magazines established in 1939 Category:Magazines disestablished in 2020 Category:Mass media in Auckland Category:Mercury Capital Category:News magazines published in New Zealand Category:Weekly magazines published in New Zealand