about THE AWARDS
The Voyager Media Awards are one of the most prestigious and highly regarded events on the New Zealand media calendar. They are held annually to encourage, showcase and acknowledge the best of New Zealand’s newspapers, magazines, news including TV and radio and websites, and the work of reporters, feature writers, columnists, cartoonists, reviewers, photographers and videographers.
The awards are governed and managed by the Newspaper Publishers’ Association (NPA), the organisation representing the country’s daily and weekend newspapers, and their websites. With a history dating back over 45 years the awards continue to grow in both prominence and prestige. In 2017, they attracted 2174 entries encompassing more than 7000 individual pieces of work across 70 categories which were judged by 59 journalists from four countries.
The event has grown into a prestigious evening, with more than 500 attendees, banquet table seating and a full three-course meal served.
The event itself is a defining night in the media industry and the nation’s only opportunity to truly celebrate outstanding work across newspaper, magazine and online news media landscapes.
For many years the awards have had one premier sponsor – Canon New Zealand Limited, and a group of supporting sponsors. Canon New Zealand is now a supporting sponsor and Voyager Internet Ltd (Voyager) has stepped in as naming sponsor for the 2018 awards.
2019 supporting sponsors include Canon New Zealand, Bauer Media, nib New Zealand, RNZ, ASB, Meridian Energy, Maori Television, Newshub, TVNZ, PMCA, AUT, BusinessNZ, Google, Huawei, E Tu, Science Media Centre, Whitecliffe Art School, Asia New Zealand Foundation, Ovato, NZ On Air, The Wine Portfolio and Cordis, Auckland.
The awards are open to all New Zealand mass-media publications including paid newspapers, community newspapers, magazines and news websites – and their individual staff and freelancers.
The New Zealand media awards have recognised excellence in New Zealand journalism since 1973. Now known as the Voyager Media Awards, they began as an idea developed by two Auckland Star news photographers, Fred Freeman and Gary Fearnley, who approached the Australian international airline, Qantas, for sponsorship for an annual news photography award.
The result was the creation of the Qantas Press Awards which started with news photography but within two years expanded to include cartooning and three years later reporting. The Qantas Awards were gradually developed to include all print journalism disciplines.
In 1993 the television industry asked to be included in the awards. The inclusion of television and radio categories required a name change for the awards and they became the Qantas Media Awards.
As the print and broadcasting industries developed so too did the awards and they were divided into separate entities: print and broadcasting. This was the structure of mainstream media awards in New Zealand until 2010 when, faced with the withdrawal of Qantas as key sponsor, the broadcasting awards lapsed due to lack of financial support.
The Newspaper Publishers’ Association took over running of the media awards in December 2009 with the retirement of Barry and Carolyn Young. Canon New Zealand already a sponsor of the new photography categories took over naming rights sponsorship in 2010.
The awards have since evolved to include emerging branches of the media. All categories are reviewed on an annual basis to ensure the awards keep in step with the rapid developments in the media world.