Eric the Goldfish was the star of a campaign used to promote awareness of the role of broadcasting funding agency NZ On Air (formed in 1989), and to encourage people to pay the broadcasting fee. The campaign used humour and CGI to spread the message, taking the point of view of a pet goldfish watching a family, who are watching TV. Although it attracted attention for its cost, the campaign was rated an "outstanding success" by its funders, and Eric entered popular culture. In 2017 Eric was reincarnated as the name of NZ On Air’s online funding application system.
Call me pretentious, call me pompous ... call me Eric! New Zealand on Air are the true custodians of our nation's culture, ensuring it's always there for young New Zealanders like Kevin and Lorraine Robinson!– Eric the Goldfish