BSA Decisions Ngā Whakatau a te Mana Whanonga Kaipāho

All BSA's decisions on complaints 1990-present
All Decisions
Morgan and NZME Radio Ltd - 2021-131 (20 December 2021)

The Authority has declined to determine a complaint under the discrimination and denigration standard about an item on Mike Hosking Breakfast. The complainant was concerned about a discussion of unvaccinated health workers, who do not amount to a relevant section of society for the purposes of the standard. The remainder of the complaint reflected the complainant’s personal views and in all the circumstances (including scientific consensus around the safety of the COVID-19 Pfizer vaccine), the Authority considered it should not determine the complaint.

Declined to Determine (section 11(b) of the Broadcasting Act 1989, in all the circumstances): Discrimination and Denigration

Nightingale and NZME Radio Ltd - 2021-129 (20 December 2021)

The Authority has not upheld a complaint that a discussion on Callum & P breached the privacy of a person interviewed on-air by disclosing their COVID-19 vaccination status. The Authority found the interviewee was a willing participant in the disclosure of her vaccination status. On this basis the broadcast did not breach the privacy standard.

Not Upheld: Privacy

Powell and Television New Zealand Ltd - 2021-127 (20 December 2021)

The Authority has not upheld a complaint that a 1 News report breached the accuracy standard by describing ivermectin as a drug for animals. The Authority found the accuracy standard was not breached as the statements were materially accurate and were not misleading.

Not Upheld: Accuracy

Waikato District Health Board and Radio New Zealand Ltd - ID2021-090G (14 December 2021)

The Authority has made the following directions in respect of the Waikato District Health Board’s referral:

  • declined to accept the two affidavits submitted as part of the WDHB’s complaint
  • invited the WDHB to provide alternative evidence to support its complaint referral, with reference to the formats outlined at paragraph [8] by 24 January 2022
  • asked RNZ to identify information it wishes to rely on by 24 January 2022, and the WDHB to provide confirmation as to whether such information is in dispute or can be accepted as correct within a further 10 working days
  • invited any further comment from the parties regarding the management of these issues by 24 January 2022.
Anderson and Discovery NZ Ltd - 2021-122 (1 December 2021)

The Authority has not upheld a complaint that a Newshub Live at 6pm report breached the accuracy and fairness standards by stating there was no evidence ivermectin works in treating or preventing COVID-19. The Authority found the accuracy standard was not breached as the statements were materially accurate and not misleading. The complainant did not identify a person or organisation said to be treated unfairly in the broadcast so the fairness standard did not apply.

Not Upheld: Accuracy, Fairness

Arps and Discovery NZ Ltd - 2021-123 (1 December 2021)

The documentary Patrick Gower: On Hate investigated the 15 March 2019 terror attacks, focusing on the stories of the victims. The documentary featured footage from 2016 showing the complainant dumping a pig’s head at Masjid Al-Noor. The complainant argued the documentary breached the fairness standard as he was not given an opportunity to comment prior to its broadcast. Noting the high public interest in the documentary, the Authority found the complainant was not treated unfairly.

Not Upheld: Fairness

Carswell and Television New Zealand Limited - 2021-113 (1 December 2021)

The Authority considered a complaint about a promo for Taskmaster which was aired during the programme Breakfast (unclassified) at 7.30am, and a promo for My Life is Murder which was aired during the programme The Chase (rated G) at 5.35pm. The Authority did not uphold the complaint that these promos, which contained brief sexual references, breached the children’s interests standard. It found the references were mild and inexplicit, were not likely to alarm or distress children, and met the requirements for a G classification.

Not Upheld: Children’s Interests

Clarke and NZME Radio Ltd - 2021-120 (1 December 2021)

The Authority has not upheld a complaint about comments by Kate Hawkesby regarding Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield. Hawkesby made several comments about Dr Bloomfield, alleging he has underperformed in the response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Authority found the fairness standard was not breached as the comments were distinguishable as the opinion of the presenter and they did not result in Dr Bloomfield being treated unfairly. Given Dr Bloomfield’s high-profile position, he can reasonably expect to be the subject of robust commentary.

Not Upheld: Fairness  

Engleby and Discovery NZ Ltd - 2021-118 (1 December 2021)

The Authority has not upheld a complaint that a clip of members of Action Zealandia shown in the documentary Patrick Gower: On Hate breached the fairness standard. The clip, approximately four seconds long, showed several unidentifiable members walking with a flag bearing Action Zealandia’s symbol. The complainant alleged that the broadcast unfairly associated the group with terrorism, and that Action Zealandia should have been given the opportunity to comment. The Authority considered the group’s participation was minor in the context of the broadcast. The broadcaster was therefore not required to inform Action Zealandia that the clip would be featured. It further found that the broadcaster was not obliged to give Action Zealandia an opportunity to comment as part of the documentary.

Not Upheld: Fairness

Grant & Findlay and NZME Radio Ltd - 2021-117 (1 December 2021)

Following an interview with Hon Dr Ayesha Verrall, Mike Hosking, on the Mike Hosking Breakfast show, replayed the interview and commented on the length of a pause during the interview. In doing so, Hosking questioned whether it was a ‘pause or a gabble’ and included sound effects of trucks passing and a turkey gobbling to ‘measure’ the pause. The complainants allege this second segment breached five standards including the good taste and decency, and fairness standards as it belittled the Associate Health Minister. The Authority did not uphold the complaints. It found the broadcast was unlikely to cause widespread undue offence or distress, or undermine widely shared community standards and was not unfair to the Associate Health Minister. The remaining standards did not apply.

Not Upheld: Good Taste and Decency, Fairness, Discrimination and Denigration, Balance, Accuracy

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