The Authority has not upheld a complaint about an election advertisement for the Labour Party that included very brief footage of a young person using a hand-held grinder without a guard. The complaint was that this was contrary to health and safety guidelines and promoted poor industrial practice. Noting the clip was fleeting and peripheral to the overall nature and purpose of the advertisement, the Authority did not find any breach of broadcasting standards. No actual or potential harm was caused in terms of the objectives of the applicable standards that outweighed the importance of freedom of expression and free political speech in the lead up to the general election.
Not Upheld: Election Programmes Subject to Other Codes (Law and Order, Good Taste and Decency, Accuracy)
The Authority has not upheld a complaint about an election advertisement for the Labour Party that included the statement, ‘Together we went hard and early to fight COVID...’ The complaint was that this statement breached broadcasting standards because it should have said the Labour Party ‘went hard and late’, on the basis it could have taken ‘some action at the border’ earlier than it did, to protect New Zealanders. The Authority found the statement was clearly opinion and advocacy promoting the Labour Party, rather than a statement of fact, and that viewers were unlikely to be misled. There was no actual or potential harm caused, to outweigh the importance of freedom of expression and free political speech in the lead up to the general election, or to justify regulatory intervention.
Not Upheld: Election Programmes Subject to Other Standards (Accuracy), Election Programme Advocacy – Distinguishing Factual Information from Opinion or Advocacy
An election advertisement for the Labour Party included the statement, ‘we’ll…make apprenticeships free to prepare for tomorrow’s jobs...’ The complainant argued that this statement was inaccurate because the apprenticeships are not free but paid for by the taxpayers. The Authority did not uphold the complaint finding that a reasonable viewer was unlikely to be misled by the programme.
Not Upheld: Election Programmes Subject to Other Standards (Accuracy)