The haka too commercial?

A few weeks ago, during the Rugby World Cup, there was a debate in the New Zealand Herald about the haka. It is always the same: the Rugby World Cup draws attention of millions of people, millions of people get to know rugby for the first time, they fall in love with the haka.

The discussion about the haka was whether the haka has become too commercial. I think this scottish advert can show my point of view:

This advert is also very good:


Miff said...

Actually I enjoy that sort of videography. As is said "imitation is the best part of flattery" and I think that many people come to the games around the world, not so much to see the All Blacks play rugby, but to see perform the Haka. There is a wish list out of ten thing to do before you do; they should make it eleven and include the Haka. That's how important the ritual is that cultural tie you spoke about but it is more than that. It is the mystical umbilical cord that intertwines all world rugby and feeds it.

sesenta y cuatro said...


I can't really separate the haka and rugby but thinking that someone may be paying more attention to the haka than to the game itself... it's weird to me.

Biscuit said...

As a South African supporter I love the Haka. South Africans respect NZ rugby and the Haka.

Having said that I really reckon that many NZers have become a tad too precious about the Haka. Getting upset when the Haka is not shown sufficient 'respect'. Making a big scene about its order in the match proceedings. That would all be understandable if the ABs did not benefit financially (indirectly) from the Haka. It has become commercial

As much as I love the Haka I reckon the calls for proper respect are ludicrous. Its roots are a warriors challenge to their opponents. I would wager that in those old days the opponents disrespected the Haka big time.

sesenta y cuatro said...

Hey, Biscuit.

Welcome to Ka Mate!!

Hm... I think we would all agree and be happy if the haka was just a "ritual dance" to be performed before every All Blacks test, wouldn't we?

But things are not always that easy and simple and when you are tempted to perform the haka in a commercial... maybe things are getting a bit out of hand.

Most NZ'ers feel it too.

If I were to have a word at any time, I would rather have it the old way: a bold challenge to their rivals. I feel quite in the direction you suggest: NZ'ers shouldn't feel insulted if opponents choose not to "show respect" for the haka.

BTW: 'Stralyans and South Africans usually are the best when it comes to facing the haka.