BSA Decisions Ngā Whakatau a te Mana Whanonga Kaipāho

All BSA's decisions on complaints 1990-present

Clark & Sallee and Apna Television Ltd - 2021-081 (20 December 2021)

Members
  • Susie Staley MNZM (Chair)
  • John Gillespie
  • Tupe Solomon-Tanoa’i
Dated
Complainant
  • Byron Clark & Nikitin Sallee
Number
2021-081
Programme
Talanoa Sa’o
Broadcaster
Apna Networks Ltd
Channel/Station
Apna Networks Limited
Standards Breached

Summary

[This summary does not form part of the decision.]

The Authority has found aspects of Talanoa Sa’o breached the accuracy standard. While parts of the programme were opinion, comment or analysis to which the standard does not apply, it did contain incorrect statements of fact, false assertions, and omissions of information which would materially mislead viewers (particularly through implication). The programme created the incorrect impression that social housing will only be provided to people who are vaccinated against COVID-19; that hydroxychloroquine is an effective COVID-19 treatment and the Government has deliberately prevented New Zealanders from accessing it; and that a baby was born after an attempted abortion and left to die as a result of recently amended abortion laws. The broadcaster did not provide evidence of reasonable efforts to ensure the accuracy of the programme.

Upheld: Accuracy

Orders: Section 13(1)(a) – broadcast statement; Section 16(4) – $500 costs to the Crown


The broadcast

[1]  An episode of Talanoa Sa’o, broadcast on APNA Television on 24 June 2021 featured Damien de Ment as a panel guest with hosts Leao Tildsley, and Fuiavailili Ala'ilima.

[2]  The programme was preceded by a full-screen notice reading:

In the following programme, some sensitive topics will be discussed. Viewer discretion is advised.

Views expressed in this programme are the personal opinion of the individuals. APNA TELEVISION does not subscribe to or necessarily agree with these. The channel provides a platform for a variety of opinions and is not biased to any culture or ideology.

[3]  At the beginning and end, the panel discussed the purpose of the programme:

  • ‘…thank you [God] for the platform that you've given us today to be able to speak the truth.’ (Mrs Tildsley)
  • ‘One of the reasons why Talanoa Sa'o was created was because we were being starved. Our views were being starved from all of these different platforms… and Talanoa Sa'o was created because we wanted to come from a Pacific perspective. And, you know, that gives us a little bit of a unique niche in the conversation regarding issues surrounding today's topics.’ (Mr Ala’ilima)
  • ‘The things I say are just really brutally honest and that I'm not creating a crime. I'm not making a victim of anyone. I'm simply speaking my mind as afforded to me.’ (Mr de Ment)
  • ‘And Lord, we're just so grateful for everything that you've done, the honesty, the integrity and the fearlessness and the courage to be able to say the truth that we've been able to say here on this programme today.’ (Mr Ala'ilima)

[4]  During the programme, the panel discussed Mr de Ment’s background and upbringing then moved on to recent issues including He Puapua, COVID-19 and abortion legislation. The programme included the following comments:

  • ‘…the He Puapua document has been put out into the discussion table. And firstly, there was no transparency around that. It just sort of sprung on us. Well, they want to make 40 percent of all housing in New Zealand, within the next 19 years, they want it to be socially provided. A lot of people's private wealth or private assets are going to have to be destroyed in order for that reality to play out…’
  • ‘…the government takes back some of those private assets and holds on to it, so later on they can dole out that social housing. But to only just citizens who are compliant, take a jab, don't question the government, let us take care of your kids...’ (Mr de Ment)
  • ‘Every person in New Zealand could have it [hydroxychloroquine] for less than two bucks. We could open our borders back up to tourists. Each one of them can take it for two bucks and we could get back to work…done.’ (Mr de Ment)
  • ‘So that's where you got the point, is that because it's two bucks...Like if it's of no profit, then, yeah, it's not of any use…’ (Mrs Tildsley)
  • ‘The interesting thing is in the January 2020, just before the Wuhan flu hit New Zealand, PHARMAC actually withdrew support for HCQ [hydroxychloroquine] just as the Wuhan's about to kick off, like the timing of that in itself, followed by the fire at the largest manufacturer of HCQ in India, which as a country is the largest producer of HCQ, and that then that factory burns down too. Things that don't get discussed in the media. But, you know, critically thinking, plausibly, you look at and go, wow, that's a strange and unusual set of circumstances.’ (Mr de Ment)
  • ‘It's like the best example is, you know, we went into the first lockdown of COVID and the government passed legislation that made abortion up until full term birth legal…while we were in lockdown. Yeah. We're so busy on the crisis that we don't realise we just sanctioned and legislated against the most defenceless human beings…’ (Mr de Ment)
  • ‘… it didn't even stop there…They bought in an appeal and said, you know, if the babies survive, you know, can we save them? And we've just had a report, of a poor little defenceless baby that was born after the abortion and it was left to die.’ (Mrs Tildsley)
  • ‘And, you know, people often forget that just one day before 9/11, when the Twin Towers in New York fell down just one day before that, Secretary of Defence Donald Rumsfeld got on camera with the news and said somehow the Department of Defence has lost two point three trillion dollars trillion with a ‘t’, and then the next day, 9/11 happened.’ (Mr de Ment)
  • ‘If we could pray about anyone, I would like to pray for a speedy, speedy disclosure to the US election tampering… because election tampering is close to home, closer to home for many of the people, you realise that.’ (Mr de Ment)

Summary of complaints and broadcaster’s response

[5]  Byron Clark and Nikitin Sallee complained the programme breached the accuracy standard. Mr Clark submitted ‘De Ment makes a number of false or misleading claims’ and the panellists were ‘promoting false information around COVID-19 and other issues’. Mr Sallee submitted there were ‘false statements relating to COVID-19’ and ‘false assertions of honesty, integrity and truth’. The complainants identified the following statements or implications in the broadcast as inaccurate:

(a)  The He Puapua report will lead to the destruction of people’s private assets to create social housing.

(b)  Social housing will only be provided to citizens who are vaccinated against COVID-19.

(c)  The implication hydroxychloroquine is an effective COVID-19 treatment and the government has deliberately prevented New Zealanders from accessing it.

(d)  A baby was born after an attempted abortion and left to die.

(e)  The US government was responsible for 9/11.

(f)  The outcome of the 2020 US presidential election was fraudulent.

[6]  The broadcaster submitted that no standards were breached as the presenters were putting forward their own views:

…the slate at the beginning of Talanoa Sao…categorical[ly] states that Apna does not endorse or support individual viewpoints. However we believe that all opinions, however unpalatable, must be heard. We believe that as long as we operate within legislation and fundamental broadcasting standards such opinions form the basis of our democracy.

The few examples…are clearly individual opinions and viewpoints about certain topics. In a democratic set up it is up to the viewer to accept or reject those viewpoints. We believe that such discussions allow for the free exchange of ideas, and unpopular viewpoints will be rejected by the viewer. Apna will not suppress any viewpoint that is allowed within the law. We will not allow anything that is abusive or promotes violence against any particular community or viewpoint.

The standard

[7]  The accuracy standard1 states broadcasters should make reasonable efforts to ensure that any news, current affairs or factual programme is accurate in relation to all material points of fact, and does not mislead. The objective of this standard is to protect audiences from being significantly misinformed.2

Our analysis

[8]  We have watched the broadcast and read the correspondence listed in the Appendix.

Freedom of expression and public interest

[9]  The right to freedom of expression is important in a democracy and it is our starting point when considering complaints. We weigh this right against the harm that may have been caused by the broadcast. We may only intervene when the limitation on the right to freedom of expression is reasonable and justified, in light of actual or potential harm caused.

[10]  We have previously recognised that programme hosts and presenters have an important and influential role.3 This carries a level of responsibility with it, especially with regard to issues like COVID-19 when there are considerable impacts on the public when standards are not observed. Conversely, we also note the importance of listeners and the general public being discerning about the information they receive, and encourage them to seek out a range of perspectives on controversial and political issues to help them arrive at informed and reasoned opinions.

[11]  It is an important role of the media in general to discuss issues that widely affect society and promote frank public discourse and discussion, which is a valuable feature of the right to freedom of expression and our democratic society. The standards provide guidance to broadcasters and media figures about how to promote and participate in this public discourse in constructive ways that minimise the potential for harm to the audience.

Application of the accuracy standard

[12]  Determination of a complaint under the accuracy standard occurs in two steps. The first step is to consider whether the programme was inaccurate or misleading. The second step is to consider whether reasonable efforts were made by the broadcaster to ensure that the programme was accurate and did not mislead.4 Being ‘misled’ is defined as being given ‘a wrong idea or impression of the facts.’5 Programmes may be misleading by omission.6

[13]  The standard only applies to news, current affairs and factual programming.7 It has been applied to various current affairs or panel-style shows such as The Panel, Nine to Noon, The Project, The AM Show, Seven Sharp, Sunday Morning, Mike Hosking Breakfast.8 In Burne-Field and NZME Radio, the Authority also applied the accuracy standard in the context of an opinion piece, stating:9

…the manner in which Mr Hosking used data gleaned from internet articles, to bolster his views on the Government’s actions with respect to COVID-19, risked misleading the audience on an issue of high public importance.

[14]  Even if a programme as a whole constitutes news, current affairs or a factual programme (to which the standard applies), the standard may be found not to apply to particular comments or parts of the programme.10 The requirement for accuracy does not apply to statements which are clearly distinguishable as analysis, comment or opinion, rather than statements of fact.11

[15]  We consider the accuracy standard applies to Talanoa Sa’o as it fits within the category of news, current affairs and factual programming. Although the panellists refer to providing a specific perspective, and the disclaimer beforehand signals the programme contains opinion, the programme’s title translates to English as ‘Straight Talk’. The panellists speak authoritatively on current events and refer to ‘say[ing] the truth’. It is analogous to programmes like the AM Show, Mike Hosking Breakfast or the Panel, which are made up of a mixture of factual statements and analysis, comment or opinion.

[16]  Regarding Mr Sallee’s submission that the programme contained ‘false assertions of honesty, integrity and truth’, rather than treating such statements as possible inaccuracies in themselves, we have used this as context to aid our finding that the programme is subject to the accuracy standard. Viewers would expect a programme called ‘Straight Talk’ where the panellists refer to ‘speak[ing] the truth’ to be subject to the accuracy standard.

[17]  Having found the accuracy standard applies to the programme, we then considered each of the alleged inaccuracies.

The alleged inaccuracies

(a) The He Puapua report will lead to the destruction of people’s private assets to create social housing

[18]  He Puapua is a document outlining how New Zealand could give effect to the UN principles in the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous people.12

[19]  We considered Mr de Ment’s comments including ‘they want to make 40 percent of all housing in New Zealand, within the next 19 years, they want it to be socially provided…A lot of people's private wealth or private assets are going to have to be destroyed in order for that reality to play out…’ are Mr de Ment’s views of what is going to have to happen for the referenced strategy to be implemented. As this amounts to his own comment and opinion, the accuracy standard does not apply.

(b) Social housing will only be provided to citizens who are vaccinated against COVID-19

[20]  Both complainants submitted Mr de Ment’s comments about social housing (referred to in reference to He Puapua) were inaccurate. Mr Clark said ‘[Mr de Ment] states…that social housing will only be provided to “citizens who are compliant” elaborating on that point by conflating ‘compliance’ with being vaccinated’. Mr Sallee said ‘Mr de Ment provides no evidence for his assertions, which are false and misleading on material points of fact. The actual policy has only age, residency, income and housing-need criteria, as is clear from the rules mandated by the Government and a summary from a community group that is active in the area’.13

[21]  The broadcaster argued comment was ‘sardonic’ and it could be interpreted as hyperbole, expressing Mr de Ment’s views regarding pressure from the government to get vaccinated.

[22]  We disagree with this interpretation as in the broader context of the comments it seems to be a genuine allegation against the Government. When discussing serious issues such as vaccination roll-out, it is important to take care to avoid scaremongering or misleading assertions.

[23]  As at the date of the programme, the Government was not implementing any rules mandating vaccinations and such rules seemed unlikely to apply to access to housing.14 While vaccines are now mandated in certain circumstances, such requirements must be balanced against existing rights.15

[24]  As the true position was readily identifiable through reasonable effort on the broadcaster’s part, we find the comment that social housing will only be provided to ‘citizens who are compliant’ breached the accuracy standard.

(c) The implication hydroxychloroquine is an effective COVID-19 treatment and the government has deliberately prevented New Zealanders from accessing it

[25]  Mr Clark submitted:

After one of the hosts mentions hydroxychloroquine in the context of COVID-19, de Ment states that if every New Zealander had this drug the country could “open our borders and get back to work”. Another host then implies that hydroxychloroquine is not being made available as a treatment because it would not be profitable to do so. Studies have shown that hydroxychloroquine has little to no impact on illness, hospitalisation, or death when used to treat COVID-19’.

[26]  Mr Sallee submitted the discussion of hydroxychloroquine included ‘assertions that are false and misleading on material points of fact.’

[27]  We asked the broadcaster to provide details on the reasonable efforts made to ensure the accuracy of the discussion about hydroxychloroquine. It submitted:

Damien de Ment mentions three facts with regard to hydroxychloroquine:

  1. It costs $2.00. This is correct. In India a strip of 10 tablets cost Rs 60, which is approximately NZ$1.10…16
  2. The second statement is about Pharmac restricting funding for hydroxychloroquine. This is accurate…Pharmac restricted funding on 24 March 2020, the same time as the first lockdown in New Zealand.17
  3. The third statement is about the fire that destroyed [a] large hydroxychloroquine manufacturing facility. This is also correct.18…However he confused Taiwan with India. The factory that was destroyed in a mystery fire in India used to manufacture the AstraZeneca vaccine and not hydroxychloroquine.19   

All other statements are Damien De Ment’s personal opinion and beliefs.

[28]  The broadcaster’s response does not address the implication from Mr de Ment’s statements that hydroxychloroquine could have enabled New Zealand to respond to COVID-19 without border closure. Hydroxychloroquine is not an effective COVID-19 treatment,20 therefore Mr de Ment’s view that ‘we could open our borders back up to tourists’ if everyone in New Zealand could take hydroxychloroquine is misleading.

[29]  Regarding the specific comments by the broadcaster, we note the following:

  • Mrs Tildsley’s comments about hydroxycholoroquine being unprofitable (therefore the Government does not want to provide it) lead into Mr de Ment’s agreement and his reasoning about a fire at ‘the largest manufacturer of HCQ in India’. As confirmed by the broadcaster, this comment is a conflation of a fire at a factory in Taiwan producing hydroxychloroquine and a fire at the world’s largest vaccine producer in India. This error reflects a lack of care taken to ensure accuracy. Additionally, a French fact-checking organisation noted the factory stopped producing hydroxychloroquine in August 2020 (the fire was reported in December 2020).21
  • Mr de Ment said PHARMAC ‘withdrew support’ for hydroxychloroquine. PHARMAC still funds hydroxychloroquine, it simply restricted the funded supply from 24 March 2020 to Medsafe-approved indications only: active rheumatoid arthritis; systemic and discoid lupus erythematosus; malaria treatment and malaria suppression.22

[30]  When it comes to ensuring accuracy, broadcasters must take reasonable steps to ensure material points of fact are accurate and the programme as a whole does not mislead. In addition to our analysis of the specific inaccuracies above, we found this particular aspect of the programme was also misleading through the omission of relevant factual information (such as the ineffectiveness of hydroxychloroquine as a COVID-19 treatment) and the implications created by such omissions, (for example, that the Government is intentionally preventing New Zealanders from accessing COVID-19 treatment.)

[31]  The response to our question regarding reasonable efforts indicates to us the broadcaster did not make reasonable efforts to ensure the accuracy of the broadcast; and it is evident that if the broadcaster had made reasonable efforts, such clear inaccuracies could have been avoided.

[32]  Therefore we find this aspect of the broadcast breached the accuracy standard.

(d) A baby was born after an attempted abortion and left to die.

[33]  Mr Clark submitted:

Leao Tildsley, one of the shows' hosts, makes that claim that a baby was born after an abortion and “left to die”. No credible news source has reported this story and the source for the claim appears to be an anti-abortion advocacy group whose only cited source is an anonymous healthcare student.

[34]  In response to our question about what efforts were made to ensure the accuracy of these comments, the broadcaster referred to s 68(1) of the Evidence Act 2006 and did not provide further information. Section 68(1) provides:

If a journalist has promised an informant not to disclose the informant’s identity, neither the journalist nor [their] employer is compellable in a civil or criminal proceeding to answer any question or produce any document that would disclose the identity of the informant or enable that identity to be discovered.

[35]  We have previously considered the accuracy of items where journalists have not identified their sources.23 In RK and Television New Zealand we noted:24

We respect the reporter’s right to protect her sources. Where this right is being exercised, however, special care must be taken to ensure that the requirements of the standards are nevertheless met.

[36]  The same principle applies here. In RK and Television New Zealand, the broadcaster explained there were two separate sources and assured the Authority the reporter trusted the information she was provided.25 We have received no such detail nor assurances in this instance and consider the broadcaster’s reliance on the Evidence Act to avoid providing further information disingenuous.

[37]  We are aware of an article from Voice for Life NZ mentioning this matter.26 However, Voice for Life is an activist group and not a reliable news source. Mrs Tildsley claims that a baby was ‘left to die’ as a result of the recent amendments to New Zealand’s abortion law. The Ministry of Health website states:27

Is there a legal requirement that babies born alive after a ‘failed’ abortion are given medical support?

A live birth after an intended abortion is extremely unlikely. From 22 weeks of pregnancy, feticide (an injection to stop the fetal heart) takes place prior to the abortion.

In the event that this did occur, all babies born alive are legal people with the same rights as any other person. There is a requirement to provide appropriate care in the same way as for any other baby.

[38]  Given the above, Ms Tildsley appears to be repeating an unverifiable report, and we have no evidence to suggest reasonable efforts were made to ensure accuracy. Therefore we find the statement about a baby being born alive ‘after the abortion’ and then ‘left to die’ breached the accuracy standard.

(e) The US Government was responsible for 9/11 and (f) the outcome of the recent US elections was fraudulent

[39]  Mr Clark submitted ‘de Ment makes several dubious statements implying the terror attacks on the United States in 2001 were some sort of government orchestrated conspiracy…’ and ‘…at the end of the show [de Ment] requests they pray for “a speedy disclosure to the US election tampering” referencing a widely held but thoroughly discredited conspiracy theory that the recent US election result was somehow fraudulent.’

[40]  We found these two statements were not material to the broadcast, which was predominantly discussing current events and Government policy in New Zealand, particularly relating to COVID-19, and were brief comments made in passing. For this reason, the comments were not subject to the accuracy standard.

For the above reasons the Authority upholds the complaints that the broadcast of Talanoa Sa’o on 24 June 2021 breached Standard 9 (Accuracy) of the Free-to-Air Television Code of Broadcasting Practice.

[41]  Having upheld these complaints under the accuracy standard, the Authority may make orders under sections 13 and 16 of the Broadcasting Act 1989. We invited submissions on orders from the parties.

Submissions

[42]  APNA initially did not make submissions on orders but took issue with aspects of our findings. In response to this we amended our decision in the following ways:

  • amended paragraph [23] to note that as at the date of the programme the government was not implementing any rules mandating vaccines
  • amended paragraph [29] to remove the statement the factory fire error reflected ‘a lack of care taken to ensure accuracy throughout the programme’ (limiting it to this particular matter)

[43]  We provided APNA a final opportunity to make submission on orders. APNA at this stage accepted the decision and outlined steps taken in response to the decision:

1-we have ceased broadcast of this particular program on our channel

2-we have put in place strict procedures that do not result in any further complaints of this nature

3-we have put in protocols that on air content will now be [reviewed by 2 other personnel] prior to broadcast

[44]  We also provided APNA a final opportunity to provide some basis for their reliance on the accuracy of the ‘baby born after an abortion’ story, short of naming their sources. APNA declined to do so, citing privacy reasons.

[45]  Mr Sallee submitted:

On the ruling itself, I think it is desirable for the Authority to note that APNA violated the [Broadcasting] Act by not responding to my complaint (and possibly the other one) within the statutory 20 working days. It appeared to me that APNA had no practical complaints system, including that its own web-based form was either non-functional or was not monitored.

As for orders, I suggest that the Authority consider the remedies proposed in my complaint, namely: 

The Code provides in 9c that “In the event that a material error of fact has occurred, broadcasters should correct it at the earliest appropriate opportunity”. In the current context, an appropriate remedy would be:

  • APNA TV immediately broadcasting a correction and apology, with special emphasis on broadcasting it in the 1900 hours timeslot on, say, the next four Thursdays.
  • immediately withdrawing [all on-line] version[s] of this programme, and redirecting that link to its correction and apology.
  • commissioning and broadcasting as soon as possible a programme of similar length with authoritative sources on the topics of this complaint, and broadcasting that programme at least once in the 1900 hours timeslot on a Thursday.

[46]  Mr Clark did not make any submissions on orders.

Authority’s decision on orders

[47]  In determining whether orders are warranted, the factors we take into consideration are:28

  • the seriousness of the breach, and the number of upheld aspects of the complaint
  • the degree of harm caused to any individual, or to the audience generally
  • the objectives of the upheld standards
  • the attitude and actions of the broadcaster in relation to the complaint (eg, whether the broadcaster upheld the complaint and/or took mitigating steps, or whether the broadcaster disputed the standards breach and/or aggravated any harm caused)
  • whether the decision will sufficiently remedy the breach and give guidance to broadcasters, or whether something more is needed to achieve a meaningful remedy or to send a signal to broadcasters
  • past decisions and/or orders in similar cases.

[48]  The following aggravating and mitigating factors are relevant in this case:

Aggravating factors:

  • The conduct is at the serious end of the spectrum, given the strong public interest in accurate information around COVID-19 vaccinations and treatments.
  • Multiple inaccuracies were found.
  • The broadcaster did not initially accept the finding (but has now).
  • The inaccuracies were not errors or oversights; the broadcaster is providing a platform for the hosts of Talanoa Sa’o to spread information which is not fact-checked nor subject to reasonable scrutiny.
  • The broadcaster did not respond to either complaint within time and did not, at the time of the complaints being made, appear to have a functioning complaints system via their website.

Mitigating factors:

  • The broadcaster has taken the programme off-air.
  • The broadcaster has taken steps to prevent similar breaches in future.
  • This is the first accuracy complaint upheld against APNA.
  • APNA has only had three complaints upheld against it, two relating to radio, and the most recent (relating to television) was in 2017.
  • APNA does not have a large share of the New Zealand audience (although its online broadcasts may have further reach).

Broadcast statement – section 13(1)(a)

[49]  A broadcast statement is typically ordered where we consider publication of the decision is insufficient to publicly denounce the breach of broadcasting standards, censure the broadcaster, or rectify the harm caused.

[50]  The breach of standards in this case had the potential to significantly mislead viewers about serious issues where there is a strong public health need for accurate information about COVID-19.

[51]  We consider a broadcast statement is an appropriate remedy for the harm caused in this case. A broadcast statement will identify and correct the inaccuracies.

[52]  Consistent with the Authority’s usual practice, the broadcaster will draft a statement summarising the upheld aspects of our decision, for approval by the Authority. The statement should be broadcast at a similar time, and on the same day of the week, as the original broadcast, in order to reach a similar audience.

Costs to the Crown – section 16(4)

[53]  Costs to the Crown (up to $5,000) are usually ordered where a broadcaster’s conduct resulting in a breach of standards is at the medium-to-serious end of the spectrum, and the Authority determines a punitive response is required.

[54]  We have not typically made costs orders for breaches of the accuracy standard. However, in our view, having balanced the factors outlined above, the conduct and seriousness of the breach justify an award of costs to the Crown. We consider a punitive response is required to hold the broadcaster to account, deter future non-compliance and confirm our expectations.

[55]  We consider of costs in the amount of $500 is appropriate.

Orders

1.  Under section 13(1)(a) of the Broadcasting Act 1989, the Authority orders APNA Television Ltd to broadcast a statement. The statement shall:

  • be broadcast during a programme similar to Talanoa Sa’o (as APNA has ceased broadcast of Talanoa Sa’o)
  • be broadcast at a similar time, and on the same day of the week, as the original broadcast
  • be broadcast within one month of the date of this decision
    contain a comprehensive summary of the upheld aspects of the Authority’s decision
  • be approved by the Authority prior to being broadcast.

The Authority draws the broadcaster’s attention to the requirement in section 13(3)(b) of the Act for the broadcaster to give notice to the Authority and the complainants of the manner in which the above orders have been complied with.

2.  Under section 16(4) of the Act, the Authority orders APNA Television Ltd to pay to the Crown costs in the amount of $500 within one month of the date of this decision.

The order for costs is enforceable in the District Court.

Signed for and on behalf of the Authority

 

 

Susie Staley
Chair
20 December 2021

 


Appendix

The correspondence listed below was received and considered by the Authority when it determined this complaint:

Byron Clark

1  Byron Clark’s complaint to APNA – 24 June 2021

2  APNA’s decision on the complaint – 29 July 2021

3  Mr Clark’s referral to the Authority – 29 July 2021

4  APNA’s comments on the referral – 11 August 2021

5  Mr Clark’s confirmation of no further comments – 26 August 2021

Nikitin Sallee

6  Nikitin Sallee’s complaint to APNA Networks Limited – 25 June 2021

7  Mr Sallee’s referral on the basis of no response – 26 July 2021

8  Mr Sallee agreeing to wait for APNA’s response – 27 July 2021

9  APNA’s decision on the complaint – 29 July 2021

10  Mr Sallee’s referral to the Authority – 6 August 2021

11  APNA’s comments on the referral – 11 August 2021

12  Mr Sallee’s confirmation of no further comments – 11 August 2021

Provisional decision

13  APNA’s submissions on provisional decision – 28 October 2021

14  Mr Sallee’s submissions on orders – 1 November 2021

15  Mr Clark’s confirmation of no submissions on orders – 4 November 2021

16  APNA’s submissions on orders – 3 December 2021


1 Standard 9 of the Free-to-Air Television Code of Broadcasting Practice
2 Commentary: Accuracy, Broadcasting Standards in New Zealand Codebook, page 18
3 See Wilson and NZME Radio Ltd, Decision No. 2019-067 at [9] and McCaughan and Television New Zealand Ltd, Decision No. 2017-083 at [39]
4 Commentary: Accuracy, Broadcasting Standards in New Zealand Codebook, page 19
5 Attorney General of Samoa v TVWorks Ltd, CIV-2011-485-1110
6 Commentary: Accuracy, Broadcasting Standards in New Zealand Codebook, page 19
7 As above
8 For example, United Fire Brigades’ Association and Radio New Zealand Ltd, Decision No. 2021-038; Hall and Discovery NZ Ltd, Decision No. 2020-159; Right to Life New Zealand and Discovery NZ Ltd, Decision No. 2021-054; End-of-Life Choice Society NZ and MediaWorks TV Ltd, Decision No. 2020-094; End-of-Life Choice Society NZ and Radio New Zealand Ltd, Decision No. 2020-095; Burne-Field and NZME Radio Ltd, Decision No. 2020-040
9 At [10]
10 For example, Knight and MediaWorks TV Ltd, Decision No. 2020-020
11 As above
12 Te Puni Kōkiri (16 August 2021) UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples <www.tpk.govt.nz/>
13 With reference to Work and Income (2 November 2020) “Clause 4. Eligibility for Social Housing” <www.workandincome.govt.nz> and Community Law “Qualifying for social housing” <www.communitylaw.org.nz>
14 Health Navigator NZ (1 September 2021) “COVID-19 vaccines” <www.healthnavigator.org.nz>
15 Claire Breen “How far should compulsory proof of vaccination go — and what rights do New Zealanders have?” The Conversation (online ed, 5 August 2021)
16 Sasti Medicine “Hydroxychloroquine 200mg Brands in India” <www.sastimedicine.com>
17 PHARMAC (16 September 2021) “COVID-19: Hydroxychloroquine” <www.pharmac.govt.nz>
18 “Pharmaceutical factory on fire after explosion: 2 injured” Taiwan English News (online ed, 20 December 2021)
19 Arshad R. Zargar “Deadly fire at massive Indian plant cranking out Oxford’s COVID vaccine” CBS News (online ed, 22 January 2021)
20 See above, and also US Food & Drug Administration (1 July 2020) “FDA cautions against use of hydroxychloroquine or chloroquine for COVID-19 outside of the hospital setting or a clinical trial due to risk of heart rhythm problems” <www.fda.gov>; US NIH COVID-19 Treatment Guidelines  (8 July 2021) “Chloroquine or Hydroxychloroquine and/or Azithromycin” <www.covid19treatmentguidelines.nih.go>; and Health Navigator NZ (31 August 2021) “Hydroxychloroquine” <www.healthnavigator.org.nz>
21 Francois D’Astier “Taiwan: accidental hydroxychloroquine factory fire, company says” AFP Factuel (online ed, 24 December 2020) <www.factuel.afp.com>
22 PHARMAC (3 August 2021) “Covid-19: Hydroxychloroquine” <www.pharmac.govt.nz>
23 See RK and Television New Zealand Ltd, Decision No. 2018-025 at [17]-[19]
24 As above, at [19]
25 As above, at [18]
26 Voice for Life NZ “Healthy NZ baby took two hours to die after late term abortion while hospital withheld medical assistance” <www.voiceforlife.org.nz>
27 Ministry of Health (9 August 2021) “Questions and answers on abortion in New Zealand” <www.health.govt.nz>
28 Guide to the BSA Complaints Process for Television and Radio Programmes, Broadcasting Standards in New Zealand Codebook, page 58