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Decisions
O’Hagan and MediaWorks Radio Ltd - 2021-136 (25 January 2022)
2021-136

The Authority has not upheld a complaint under the good taste and decency and other standards about comments on Magic Talk regarding the LynnMall terror incident. Host Stephen McIvor responded “well spoken” to a caller who praised police for their actions (killing the suspect) which saved the country money. While insensitive, the comments did not reach the threshold for regulatory intervention. The remaining standards either did not apply or were not breached. Not Upheld: Good Taste and Decency, Children’s Interests, Violence, Law and Order...

Decisions
Madden and MediaWorks Radio Ltd - 2016-055 (14 October 2016)
2016-055

Summary[This summary does not form part of the decision. ]During The Edge’s Smash! 20 countdown show, a caller successfully answered a series of questions based on the songs in the countdown and won a prize. While taking the caller’s personal details, the announcer left the phone channel in ‘on-air’ mode and inadvertently broadcast the caller’s full name, address, school, date of birth and mobile number. The Authority upheld a complaint that the broadcast breached the caller’s privacy. The caller was clearly identifiable and disclosed a high level of personal detail on air, over which she had a reasonable expectation of privacy. The Authority acknowledged the caller’s disclosure was the result of an unfortunate technical error on the announcer’s part, and that the broadcaster took immediate actions to respond to the breach. The Authority did not make any order in these circumstances....

Decisions
Hawthorne and MediaWorks Radio Ltd - 2015-097 (14 April 2016)
2015-097

Te Raumawhitu Kupenga declared a conflict of interest and did not participate in the determination of this complaint. Summary[This summary does not form part of the decision. ]During Talk with Willie and Alison, host Willie Jackson referred to a caller (who seemed to snore, rather than talk, on the other end of the phone) as ‘one of those crackers’. The Authority did not uphold a complaint alleging that the term ‘cracker’ was a racial slur which discriminated against white people and/or poor white people. The host did not appear to use the term in the way alleged by the complainant, but rather as a light-hearted reference to the caller’s state of mind, and could not be said to have encouraged discrimination against, or denigration of, white people and/or poor white people in this context....

Decisions
Parlane and MediaWorks Radio Ltd - 2018-017 (21 May 2018)
2018-017

Summary[This summary does not form part of the decision. ]During the talkback programme, Overnighter, host Garry McAlpine invited listeners to call in to discuss the issues facing New Zealand in 2018, one of which was the upcoming cannabis referendum. Mr McAlpine strongly expressed his view, throughout the programme, that cannabis should be decriminalised for medicinal and recreational use. A number of callers, including the complainant, expressed their views on the subject, with some supportive of, and others opposed to, Mr McAlpine’s views. The Authority did not uphold a complaint that this programme was in breach of broadcasting standards. Talkback radio is known for robust discussion, and broadcasting standards recognise that it is an opinionated environment, with hosts granted some latitude to be provocative and edgy in the interests of generating robust debate. This programme in particular featured genuine discussion on an important issue in New Zealand....

Decisions
JN and Mediaworks Radio Ltd - 2017-053 (27 October 2017)
2017-053

Summary[This summary does not form part of the decision. ]A segment on Thane & Dunc included an interview with a man, X, who had a relationship with a couple (the complainant and Z). During the interview, X described the nature of the relationship. He did not name the couple, referring to them as ‘A’ and ‘B’. A second interview with X was broadcast the following day, during which the hosts told X they had spoken with the couple, who alleged the relationship was abusive. The hosts interrogated X about his behaviour, then demanded X apologise and agree to make no further contact with the couple involved. The Authority upheld a complaint that these broadcasts breached the privacy of the complainant and Z....

Decisions
Lowes and MediaWorks Radio Ltd - 2020-004 (16 June 2020)
2020-004

The Authority has declined to determine a complaint that a reference to ‘the future King of England’ during a news segment was inaccurate. The complainant has previously referred a number of complaints about similar issues to the Authority, which were either not upheld, with comprehensive reasons given for the Authority’s decision, or which the Authority declined to determine. The complainant’s appeal of a previous decision to the High Court on a similar issue was also dismissed. The Authority therefore declined to determine the complaint under section 11(a) of the Broadcasting Act 1989, on the grounds that it was trivial and vexatious. Declined to Determine: Accuracy...

Decisions
FJ and MediaWorks Radio Ltd - 2018-026 (5 June 2018)
2018-026

Summary[This summary does not form part of the decision. ]A segment on the George FM Saturday Drive Show featured an announcer making comments about the complainant regarding an incident in the past, where the announcer allegedly saw the complainant engaging in certain activities. The broadcaster upheld the complaint under the privacy and fairness standards and issued written apologies to the complainant. The complainant referred the complaint to the Authority on the basis the broadcast also breached the accuracy standard and the apologies did not address the alleged inaccuracies in the broadcast. The Authority did not uphold the accuracy complaint, finding that, due to the nature of the broadcast and audience expectations, the Saturday Drive Show did not amount to ‘news, current affairs or factual programming’ to which the accuracy standard applied....

Decisions
Markula and Mediaworks Radio Ltd - 2020-144 (31 March 2021)
2020-144

The Authority has not upheld a complaint about an interview between Magic Talk host Ryan Bridges and World Health Organisation Special Envoy Dr David Nabarro. The complainant argued the interview contained inaccurate information about Sweden’s approach to COVID-19 and mask wearing, and inaccurately suggested Dr Nabarro advocated New Zealand adopt Sweden’s approach. The Authority found the relevant statements were comment, analysis or opinion to which the accuracy standard does not apply. It also concluded they were not materially inaccurate or misleading in the context of the interview. The standards of good taste and decency, balance and fairness either did not apply or were not breached. Not Upheld: Accuracy, Good Taste and Decency, Balance, Fairness...

Decisions
Green and MediaWorks Radio Ltd - 2015-087 (3 March 2016)
2015-087

Leigh Pearson declared a conflict of interest and did not participate in the determination of this complaint. Summary[This summary does not form part of the decision. ]During Talk with Sean Plunket, the CEO of the National Foundation for the Deaf called in to discuss captioning on television, and especially the perceived problem of the lack of captioning of broadcasts of the 2015 Rugby World Cup. Mr Plunket argued, ‘You can actually watch the rugby with the sound off, you can see – they’ve got big numbers on their backs – you can see what’s happening’ and asked, ‘Really is this such a problem?’ After further discussion, he stated, ‘You do have a hearing problem because you’re not actually engaging in a conversation’. The Authority did not uphold a complaint that Mr Plunket’s comments amounted to bullying and denigrated the deaf community....

Decisions
Durie and MediaWorks Radio Ltd - 2014-052
2014-052

Summary [This summary does not form part of the decision. ] The George FM Breakfast show contained a discussion about the complainant’s use of the dating application Tinder, during which derogatory comments were made about him. The broadcaster upheld the complaint this was unfair. However, the Authority found that the action taken by the broadcaster was insufficient, as the apology broadcast by the show’s hosts was insufficiently specific or formal to effectively remedy the breach. The Authority ordered a broadcast statement including an apology to the complainant. Upheld: Fairness (Action Taken) Not Upheld: Privacy, Accuracy, Discrimination and Denigration, Responsible Programming Order: Section 13(1)(a) broadcast statement including apology to the complainant Introduction [1] The George FM Breakfast show contained a discussion about the complainant’s use of the dating application Tinder, during which derogatory comments were made about him....

Decisions
Hargreaves and MediaWorks Radio Ltd - 2020-044B (14 October 2020)
2020-044B

The Authority has not upheld a complaint about the host’s language and approach during an interview broadcast on Magic Afternoons with Sean Plunket. Mr Plunket interviewed the Chief Executive of Universities New Zealand about the charging of holding fees for accommodation at university halls of residence during the COVID-19 lockdown period. During the interview Mr Plunket appeared increasingly frustrated and hung up on the interviewee after using the phrase, ‘Jesus Christ’. Noting it has previously determined that the use of variations of ‘Jesus’ and ‘Christ’ as exclamations or expressions of frustration or surprise did not threaten community standards, the Authority did not find any breach of the good taste and decency standard in this case....

Decisions
Hashimoto and MediaWorks Radio Ltd - 2014-040
2014-040

Leigh Pearson declared a conflict of interest and did not take part in the determination of this complaint. Summary [This summary does not form part of the decision. ] During Talkback with Sean Plunket, one caller expressed views opposing drilling including the fact drilling resources were sent to China who manufactured it into ‘crap’. Later in the programme, the host sarcastically referred back to the caller’s comments, referring to the ‘Damn Chinese’. The Authority did not uphold the complaint that his comments were offensive and disrespected Chinese people. The host was being sarcastic, and was actually defending China, not being derogatory. In any case the comments did not carry any invective and did not encourage the denigration of, or discrimination against, Chinese people. Not Upheld: Good Taste and Decency, Discrimination and Denigration Introduction [1] During Talkback with Sean Plunket, one topic of discussion was proposed offshore drilling in Taranaki....

Decisions
Lerner and MediaWorks Radio Ltd - 2021-091 (13 October 2021)
2021-091

A segment on Magic Afternoons with Leah Panapa and Danny Watson on 1 July 2021 touched on the topic of Jewish people in Hollywood and included the comment ‘Hollywood was run by Jewish people. ’ The broadcaster conceded the comments made by the hosts ‘reflected a trope evoking prejudicial ideas’ and upheld a complaint under the discrimination and denigration standard. The Authority found the comments had the potential to affirm, further embed and spread negative stereotypes, but in the circumstances considered the action taken by the broadcaster was sufficient to address the breach. Not Upheld: Discrimination and Denigration (Action Taken)...

Decisions
Alcohol Healthwatch Trust and Mediaworks Radio Ltd - 2020-053 (28 October 2020)
2020-053

The Authority has upheld a complaint that the action taken by MediaWorks in response to a breach of the alcohol standard during The Morning Rumble was insufficient. The Authority agreed that the item, which focussed on an interviewee’s ability to ‘down’ alcohol at a rapid rate, amounted to alcohol promotion that was socially irresponsible. While the broadcaster had apologised to the complainant, and communicated the importance of the alcohol standard internally to content directors of The Rock FM, the Authority found that this was insufficient to remedy the harm caused by the broadcast. Upheld: Alcohol (action taken) Orders: Section 13(1)(a) – broadcast statement; Section 16(4) – $1,000 costs to the Crown...

Decisions
McCabe and MediaWorks Radio Ltd - 2014-129
2014-129

Summary [This summary does not form part of the decision. ]The song 'Smile' by Lily Allen was broadcast during MORE FM Breakfast with Si and Gary. The song included one muted use of the word 'fucking'. The Authority did not uphold the complaint that the item breached standards of good taste and decency as the word 'fucking' was not clearly audible and occurred only once in the song. Not Upheld: Good Taste and DecencyIntroduction[1] The song 'Smile' by Lily Allen was broadcast during MORE FM Breakfast with Si and Gary. The opening lyrics of the song included one instance of the word 'fucking', which was partly muted. [2] Christine McCabe complained that the word 'fucking' was 'quite audible'. [3] The issue is whether the broadcast breached the good taste and decency standard of the Radio Code of Broadcasting Practice....

Decisions
Lee and MediaWorks Radio Ltd - 2017-030 (24 July 2017)
2017-030

Summary[This summary does not form part of the decision. ] During a segment on Jay-Jay, Dom & Randell, the show’s hosts asked callers to submit a ‘corny joke’. A caller submitted the following joke: ‘What’s the hardest part about cooking a vegetable? Trying to fit the wheelchair in the pot. ’ Before the caller delivered the punchline, one of the hosts (who believed he knew the joke), asked his co-hosts to switch off their microphones so they could discuss it. The hosts also spoke to their producer, asking whether it was appropriate to air the punchline to the joke. After some deliberation, they decided to allow the joke to be broadcast. The hosts reacted to the punchline by saying, ‘No! No! That’s a terrible joke!’ and ‘That’s not a joke!’ The Authority did not uphold a complaint that the segment was in poor taste and discriminatory....

Decisions
Parlane and MediaWorks Radio Ltd - 2018-001 (18 April 2018)
2018-001

Summary[This summary does not form part of the decision. ]During Morning Talk with Mark Sainsbury a caller to the programme discussed her experience with divorce legal proceedings in the Family Court and subsequent appeals. A complaint was made that, by allowing the caller to disclose details of the proceedings, the broadcaster breached the law and order standard. The Authority expressed serious concerns with the way in which the call was allowed to progress, as private information was disclosed by the caller which had been suppressed in the Family Court. The Authority found the broadcaster needs to be more alert to the issues surrounding Family Court matters and similar proceedings as issues of contempt, as well as fairness and privacy, may arise....

Decisions
Te Whata and MediaWorks Radio Ltd - 2020-141 (31 March 2021)
2020-141

The Authority has not upheld a complaint about comments by Sean Plunket on his talkback programme regarding Christians and Christianity. While Mr Plunket made highly critical comments and expressed scepticism, this was not beyond audience expectations for a robust, opinionated programme and was unlikely to cause widespread offence. Equally, the comments were unlikely to encourage the discrimination or denigration of Christians. The Authority found callers in to the programme were treated fairly by Mr Plunket, given they had willingly phoned in to provide views on a discussion in which Mr Plunket was criticising the Christian faith, and were given the opportunity to express their own views. The remaining standards did not apply. Not Upheld: Good Taste and Decency, Discrimination and Denigration, Fairness, Violence, Accuracy, Balance...

Decisions
Jamieson and MediaWorks Radio Ltd - 2016-057 (14 October 2016)
2016-057

Summary[This summary does not form part of the decision. ]Hosts on The Morning Sound radio show discussed the news that the Tui Brewery at Mangatainoka had made a number of workers redundant. The hosts commented that the Brewery was where the ‘pretty’ and ‘hot girls’ worked and expressed their concern about them being ‘laid off’, making comments such as, ‘All the pretty girls are going. . . ’, ‘I hope they don’t get rid of any of the hot girls’, and ‘I don’t know if I can drink the beer if it’s not had the ladies’ touch. ’ The Authority did not uphold a complaint that this discussion was denigrating or discriminatory towards any female workers made redundant, or to women generally. The hosts were clearly referring to a series of satirical Tui television advertisements, which depicted the Mangatainoka Brewery as being run by women....

Decisions
Ahern and MediaWorks Radio Ltd - 2014-063
2014-063

Summary [This summary does not form part of the decision. ]During The Edge Afternoons with Guy, Sharyn and Clint the hosts ran a segment called ‘Shaz Dog’s Love Shack’, where listeners could text and call in to ask for advice on love and relationships. The Authority did not uphold the complaint that ‘a discussion of sexual positions’ breached standards. The segment was consistent with the style of content and humour regularly broadcast on The Edge, and was unlikely to surprise or offend the target audience of 15- to 39-year-olds. Most of the content was in the nature of sexual innuendo and would have gone over the heads of younger listeners....

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