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March 10, 2008 | by  | in Features | [ssba]

Keith Ng

News Editor 2004 & 2005, yum cha aficionado and Wellington blogger Keith Ng. The Genghis Khan of news journalism, champion hobb knobber of Wellington, Master of Statistics. The former News Editor walks into the Salient office, pants pulled up under his arm pits, brow drenched in sweat with Red Bull in hand. We sit down on the couch and dive into deep conversation about his time in this sacred office.

After a fleeting flirtation with former competing mag Lucid, Keith started his involvement in Salient by writing satire news, with the “week that wasn’t”. Topics such as “al Qaeda engaging in commercial whaling”, wars between campuses and faculties at Victoria, Nick Kelly becoming a Tory and vaporising VUWSA, and TelstraClear merging with Samoa filled the pages.

2004 saw Keith take the reigns as News Ed, a semi respectable position that became highly disrespectable in the direct aftermath of his reign of terror. During his time as News Ed he faced some challenges. One of them came in the form of an injunction raised by the University to stop the publication of documents that had been leaked to Salient. This Keith described as fun, and that the $4000 lawyer was superfluous. The dispute was settled with Salient returning the leaked documents somewhat more tarnished than when they received them.

Many of Keith’s news stories have used statistics: he sees this as a way of student media being able to use its long turn-around time to an advantage that normal media outlets don’t have. The favourite statistic he used while at Salient was one that showed over a four year period the number of people getting student allowance steadily decreased (while the Labour government claimed that it was increasing).

Salient is the freest place you will ever get to write. You can experiment with style and content. There is little editorial pressure, and it is a freedom you wouldn’t get unless you are Rupert Murdoch.” Keith praises the open dynamics of student media and the ability of Salient to allow people to express their views with no interference. He sees mainstream media outlets as not dynamic enough, but aware of the need to change.

Keith denies ever using psychotropic substances to aide his writing, although he did once try party pills which he was convinced were P. Witnesses to this occasion said he spoke loudly obnoxiously and constantly. He was also reported to have lost at poker.

Keith spends his days now as a columnist for the Herald on Sunday, sporadically updating his blog, On Point, which features on Public Address, eating copious amounts of Yum Cha, tutoring the orphan kids in POLS 111, hob knobbing, and is hoping to get a website up and running in time for the election, called Fact Check.


About the Author ()

The editor of this fine rag for 2009.

Comments (10)

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  1. Brunswick says:

    I think you mean ‘hob-nobbing’. I believe that ‘hob-knobbing’ is an adult act performed between a man and a consenting heating surface.

  2. Keith Ng says:

    Yes, that is what Jackson is referring to. Mmmm. Heating surfaces.

  3. Jackson Wood says:

    Keith is also affectionate toward microwaves, primus stoves, and hangi pits.

  4. What is ‘hobb knober’ even supposed to mean? Do you guys have sub-editors? How about ‘reins’? Keith Ng, bless his soul, would be shocked at these grammatical errors if he weren’t so busy hobknobbing all the heated surfaces in the press gallery.

  5. tim says:

    These errors are also in the magazine..

  6. Brunswick says:

    I guess Kerry didn’t get to that page…

    This is a good idea for a new column, a dictionary of new words created the previous week.

    A ‘hobb knober’ is very nearly actually a word:

    Now… what is a ‘hungi’? A combination feast and execution? :)

  7. Dave says:

    Maybe Keith is hob knobing all the heated surfaces in the Press gallery. Or could he be talking party pills “‘which he told were P”. Or perhaps he is concerned that Salient is now a “they” instead of an “it”.

    So, what Laura said. Her first comment, par 2.

  8. Geoff says:

    sniffle . . . Keith hob-knobbed me in a Nagoya onsen. I still cry sometimes.

  9. Keith Ng says:

    I think “hungi” is a reference to the other kind of hung. Mmmmm. Slow roasted on hot rocks.

    Sorry Geoff, I thought that was just what people did in onsens, what with the dozens of naked old men watching us expectantly and all.

    I’m pretty sure somebody’s going to Google this and it’s going to bite me in the ass when I run as a Destiny Party candidate.

  10. Joshua Drummond says:

    That just happened. I keep trying and failing to get at your Herald on Sunday column. I turned to Google, and instead of Fact Check, found hob-knobbing. Consider your Destiny candidacy fucked, Keith.

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