Assignment Special. Investigation of scampi fishing industry with allegations of corruption. Complainants’ application for production of documents and affidavits.
Assignment. In interview on mental health system, complainant's family was mentioned despite prior agreement not to. Upheld (privacy). Orders ($1500 compensation to complainant, $750 contribution to complainant’s expenses).
The Assignment. Film showed sexual behaviour and nudity, and violence. Upheld (children's interests). Not upheld (good taste and decency, violence). No order.
Assignment. Election special analysed the Auckland electorates and included statement about student loans. Upheld (accuracy). No order.
Assignment. Preview of item on state of New Zealand railways had interviewees using mildly offensive language. Not upheld (good taste and decency).
Assignment: "The Parent Trap". Documentary about divorce and men who feel disadvantaged by the family law system. Not upheld (balance).
Assignment. Documentary about child abuse used archival footage of Heperi family without seeking permission. Not upheld (fairness, privacy).
Items on One News and Tonight examined what was described as new evidence relating to the William Sutch trial, in the context of an Assignment programme that same evening which reviewed the historic charges against Dr Sutch. Upheld (fairness: extracts used must be 'a true reflection and not a distortion': action taken insufficient). Not upheld (accuracy: evidence was 'new'). Order (broadcast of statement).
Assignment. Programme re-examined allegations that Dr William Sutch had engaged in espionage. Not upheld (accuracy, fairness, balance, impartiality).
Assignment: "Threats and Promises". Programme examined government defence policy. Complaints that programme was unbalanced. Not upheld: majority (balance). Not upheld because not applicable (fairness: a true reflection and not a distortion).
Assignment: "Up in Smoke". Documentary about cigarette smoking in New Zealand discussed health risks and consequences of smoking, and focused particularly on the effects on Maori and young smokers. Not upheld (law and order, balance, fairness, accuracy, discrimination and denigration).
Assignment. Documentary examined a theory which linked those who abused animals in their youth to violent offences in later years and included video footage of teenage boys tormenting a dog. It was explained that they had filmed the video themselves. Not upheld (violence). Subsumed (good taste and decency).
Assignment. Item depicted a public meeting of the Act Party in Tauranga. The reporter stated that Act staff had told the broadcaster after the meeting that supporters of the group, Voters’ Voice, had given each Act MP a copy of the recent speeches of Pauline Hansen. Not upheld (accuracy).
Assignment. Programme broadcast at at 6.30pm focused on trial of Malcolm Rewa, accused and found guilty of a large number of sexual attacks on women, and included material that was "explicit and distressing". It replaced an advertised Our World programme, a programme watched unsupervised by many children. Upheld (children's interests, violence). Not upheld (good taste and decency). No order.
Best of Assignment. The programme was initially broadcast on Assignment in April 1997, and the rescreening in December updated the information contained in the original broadcast by the use of a postscript in the form of a studio piece at the end of the broadcast. Complaint that the programme reflected a negatively biased view of the industry, and the postscript was inadequate in view of the events which had occurred in recent months. Not upheld (balance, accuracy, fairness, responsible programming).
Assignment. Programme featured disputes between medical specialists and midwives about maternity care. It concentrated on a couple whose child had died, and their midwife. Upheld: majority (fairness). Not upheld (privacy). No order.
Assignment. Documentary about West Auckland used the murder of a young woman by her partner to illustrate the theme of the "Wild West". Complaint that item lacked balance and that by showing and identifying her, it had breached the privacy of the murdered woman's young daughter. Not upheld (balance, privacy).
Assignment. Programme examined the background to a brutal murder in West Auckland and used it as the basis of a documentary about that region. The programme asked whether the area's "Wild West" image reflected deep social problems. Former mayor of Waitemata City, Tim Shadbolt, complained that the programme suggested that West Auckland had developed a reputation for "larrikin behaviour" during his mayoralty. Not upheld (fairness, balance).
Assignment. The programme explored the economic crisis facing traditional sheep and cattle farmers and mentioned some of the land use alternatives to traditional farming adopted by some farmers. Complaint that the programme omitted any reference to the alternative of organic farming. Not upheld (balance).
Assignment, Meet the Press. The first of these programmes profiled and analysed three of the minor political parties, the second interviewed the leaders of two of these parties. The New Zealand Conservative Party complained about not being included. Not upheld (balance, accuracy).