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Michael Laws out, Sean Plunket in at RadioLive

MediaWorks has confirmed speculation that Michael Laws is leaving RadioLive, replaced by Sean Plunket.

Mr Plunket quit NewsTalk ZB last month, and was widely tipped to take Mr Laws nine-to-noon slot.

Mr Laws final show will be March 31 next year. Mr Plunket will start in April.

A second newcomer, TV3 political editor Duncan Garner, will takeover RadioLive's drivetime slot on December 1, replacing Andrew Patterson.

Patrick Gower will be promoted to fill Mr Garner's 3News role.

MediaWorks spokeswoman Rachel Lorimer brushed aside media speculation that RadioLive breakfast host Marcus Lush would depart, or be moved to a different time - perhaps making way for Mr Plunkett to fill the primetime slot.

"The Marcus Lush Breakfast show is going well - he's now enjoyed two consective audience boosts in the past two radio surveys - and Marcus isn't going anywhere," Mr Lorimer said. Mr Lush would "absolutely" stay in the breakfast slot.

The latest 6am-to-midnight six-month radio ratings have RadioLive winning back lost ground in the key Auckland market, increasing its share from 2.9% to 3.7% - but still trailing talk radio rival NewsTalkZB, which tops the audience measurement survey with a 13.4% share (up from 12% in the previous survey).

History of violations
Mr Laws has faced 12 broadcasting complaints since joining RadioLive in 2005, losing five.

Recent greatest hits include a November 2011 hearty threat to journalists ("If I had a gun I'd shoot them - put them out of their misery - because they have gone rabid and they may infect others.") and a BSA-ordered apology after he asked a female caller if she could "wear a muzzle."

MediaWorks did not link the controversies to Mr Laws' departure. The former Whanganui Mayor and NZ First MP offered only that it was time for a change. He wanted to spend more time with his family.

Across the Tasman, the shock jock genre appears to have gone out of style - at least with advertisers who withdrew support for Alan Jones' show following the former Wallabies Coach's off-colour joke about the death  of Julia Gilard's father.

Comments and questions

Ah great. Lost Sean Plunket. Can't stand Radio Live. What a loss.

Radio Live rating will climb with Laws imminent departure - particularly in Whanganui. Laws is not liked at all.

Absolutely devasted - Laws was one of the few who would stand up to all the pansy socialist claptrap we're fed by the media on a daily basis. A great loss.

Laws? Meh. Opinionated ignoramus.

Laws was a real New Zealander ,I guess we will be back to the Poly Panering Brigade .

Laws liked the sound of his own voice most at uni and nothing changed thereafter. No great loss and a great double would be to get rid of Chris Trotter from all types of media as well.Birds of a feather

Two solid appointments there. There's no room for shock jocks any more. Good for a laugh, but they've had their day.

Laws tells things as they are. A good antidote to pc rubbish infecting society. Also he has insight to the way politicians behave and work. A thoughtful person. He and Chris Trotter are at opposite ends of the spectrum. I would not compare the two.

Appointment suits the Lefties at LIVE

Sean Plunket will be a great asset...National Radio has been lost without him in their 6-9am slot.

Whens commandant russell norman get a slot?

Sean's move should be a win-win situation for both ZB and Live stations

Sean Plunket projects a personality of total blankness and greyness and therefore is a complete failure as a modern journalist and communicator. He is so uninteresing I have never registered anything he has said other than to percieve he is a another identikit Nat Radio neo marxist defending the social workers and creation of jobs for the proletariat. Laws was a crude provincial bogan at heart and his politics was a different form of SA socialism.

Hi Michael. Don't be bitter just accept your dumping for a better presenter and move on. Time to leave Whanganui too and perhaps you could shift to Blenheim to even the scales of unwanteds.

Yay!!! Break out the bolly Plunket is leaving NewsTalk ZB and hopefully Wellington. Never did like his style ....or Should I say lack of it. Far too bombastic for my liking.

I'll miss Michael. He spoke his truth and you can admire him for that. NZ has become PC grey and he said what sometimes needed to be said. Same as Chris Trotter, I often don't share his views, but they are honest views, views you can learn from. Nobody owns the truth, not even the PC brigade. When I listen to a program, I like to be challenged, Michael did that.

Who is Shorn Plunkett?

The best thing about Whanganui? Michael Laws.

sounds like national going in2 damage control b4 the next election..more right wing comentators!! yea NOT!

About time Radio live got rid of that nasty little sh*t.

good news, glad to see the bigot got the chop

Another that goes of half cocked with out checking his facts takes as gospel then publishes complet fabrication with out checking facts or what the collateral damage to his published tripe .

shame he is not going this week...