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Decisions
Crossland and Television New Zealand Ltd - 2023-058 (20 November 2023)
2023-058

The Authority has issued a split decision in relation to a Sunday item which reported on a ‘silicosis epidemic’ in Australia’s engineered stone workforce and raised questions about New Zealand’s response to the same concerns, suggesting New Zealand is failing to address its own ‘looming health crisis’. The complaint alleged the broadcast breached the accuracy and balance standards as it misled the audience to believe the industry in New Zealand had the same regulatory failings as Australia, and was unbalanced as it omitted other perspectives on the New Zealand situation (for example, from the industry). The Authority did not uphold the accuracy complaint, finding it was reasonable for TVNZ to rely on the selected interviewee as a local authoritative source and spokesperson on this issue....

Decisions
Housing New Zealand Corporation and Māori Television Service - 2018-100 (24 June 2019)
2018-100

Māori Television Service (MTS) aired a story on Te Kāea about how hapū Te Parawhau felt they had been shut out of negotiations on the sale of a piece of land, known as Pūriri Park in Northland, to Housing New Zealand (HNZ). The Authority upheld HNZ’s complaint under the balance standard, finding the omission of HNZ’s point of view from the initial broadcast likely prevented audiences from arriving at an informed and reasoned opinion about the sale and HNZ’s involvement. The Authority also upheld HNZ’s complaint under the accuracy and fairness standards, finding that while MTS aired a follow-up broadcast featuring comment from Te Parawhau and HNZ, this broadcast did not remedy the harm caused to HNZ by the initial broadcast of inaccurate information about the land sold....

Decisions
Horowhenua District Council and MediaWorks Radio Ltd - 2018-105 (29 July 2019)
2018-105

A broadcast of The Long Lunch hosted by Wendyl Nissen included an interview with Horowhenua District Councillor (HDC) Ross Campbell, who talked about his decision to wear a body camera to Council meetings after what was described as incidents of bullying towards him. MediaWorks upheld the complaint under the fairness standard, finding that it should have sought comment from HDC prior to the broadcast, but did not take any remedial action. The Authority upheld HDC’s complaint that the action taken by MediaWorks following the finding of the breach of the fairness standard was insufficient. The Authority found that MediaWorks ought to have broadcast a follow-up item to remedy the breach. The Authority also upheld the complaint that the item was unbalanced as it did not include any comment from HDC or acknowledgement of an alternative viewpoint with respect to the allegations of bullying....

Decisions
The University of Otago and Television New Zealand Ltd - 2019-082 (9 June 2020)
2019-082

The University of Otago (the University) complained that three broadcasts by TVNZ, about sexual assault allegations by former and current students of the University, breached the fairness, balance and accuracy standards of the Free-to-Air Television Code of Broadcasting Practice. The complaint about Sunday was not upheld, but aspects of the complaint about Breakfast and 1 News were upheld. Overall, the Sunday programme was balanced, as it included comment from the University and was clearly signalled as coming from the perspective of the women interviewed. No material inaccuracies were identified, and the University was given a reasonable opportunity to respond. However, the Breakfast and 1 News items focussed more specifically on perceived shortcomings of the University and its decision not to be interviewed, resulting in unfairness to the University. The Authority also found that the Breakfast programme lacked balance....

Decisions
RK and Television New Zealand Ltd - 2018-025 (24 August 2018)
2018-025

Summary[This summary does not form part of the decision. ] An item on 1 News reported on an alleged ‘mistake’ by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT), which the reporter, Andrea Vance, said ‘cost the taxpayer a quarter of a million dollars’. The item referred to MFAT’s action in waiving the diplomatic immunity of an MFAT employee – the complainant – to allow child custody and matrimonial proceedings to be heard in an overseas court. According to Ms Vance, MFAT’s actions were disputed by the complainant’s ex-partner, resulting in MFAT issuing an apology and payment of ‘legal bills’ to both the complainant and the complainant’s ex-partner. The Authority upheld aspects of a complaint from the MFAT employee that the item was inaccurate, unbalanced and unfair....

Decisions
South Waikato District Council and MediaWorks TV Ltd - 2018-022 (10 August 2018)
2018-022

Summary[This summary does not form part of the decision. ]An item on The Project discussed the building of a new gambling venue in Tokoroa set to contain 30 gambling machines (‘pokies’). The segment was critical of the South Waikato District Council’s (SWDC) role in the authorisation of this new venue, and also one of the Councillors’ roles as both a Councillor and manager of one of the clubs involved in the creation of the proposed new venue. The following evening one of the programme hosts issued an on-air apology to the Councillor, clarifying inaccurate statements made about their involvement in the decision-making process. The Authority upheld SWDC’s complaint that the action taken by MediaWorks did not sufficiently remedy the harm caused by the breaches. The Authority found that the statement the following night did not remedy the harm caused to SWDC by the broadcast, only the Councillor....

Decisions
Ministry of Education and Radio New Zealand Ltd - 2017-076 (18 April 2018)
2017-076

Summary[This summary does not form part of the decision. ]On 18 March 2017, RNZ reported on allegations made by the Board of Trustees at Salisbury School, a Nelson school for girls with complex learning needs, that the Ministry of Education (Ministry) had actively discouraged parents from enrolling children at the school so that it could be closed. On 31 March and 6 April 2017, RNZ broadcast a series of items about an alleged lack of funding, resources and support for Northland teachers struggling to cope with violent and disruptive children. The Authority upheld aspects of a complaint from the Ministry that RNZ’s coverage of these issues was unfair and unbalanced....

Decisions
New Zealand Greyhound Racing Association Inc and Discovery NZ Inc - 2022-084 (30 January 2023)
2022-084

The Authority has upheld a complaint about an item on Newshub Live at 6pm that discussed the alleged misuse of public funds for safety improvements at a greyhound racetrack. The complainant alleged the programme did not present a balanced view of the issue and misled the audience on key facts regarding what action was taken at the raceway. The Authority found the item was presented in a way that favoured the perspectives of those critical of the racing club’s actions, without giving reasonable opportunities to provide balance from the other side of the story. The Authority also found that a collection of factual errors in the item meant, overall, viewers were materially misled. Upheld: Balance, Accuracy...

Decisions
Phillips and Racing Industry Transition Agency - 2019-044 (22 January 2020)
2019-044

The Authority has upheld a complaint that two episodes of The Box Seat breached the accuracy and balance standards of the Pay TV Code of Broadcasting Standards. The Authority found that the segments about blood spinning in harness racing covered a controversial issue of public importance but failed to include balancing views on the issue being discussed or indicate that the programmes were presented from a specific perspective. The Authority also found that, although the broadcasts did not contain any specific factual inaccuracies, the omission of alternative perspectives and information on the safety and propriety of blood spinning meant that the broadcast was misleading as a whole. The Authority did not uphold the complaint under the fairness standard. The Authority considered the publication of this decision sufficient to censure the breach of standards by the broadcaster and made no orders. Upheld: Balance, Accuracy. Not upheld: Fairness. No orders...

Decisions
Casino Control Authority and Radio New Zealand Ltd - 1994-042
1994-042

BEFORE THE BROADCASTING STANDARDS AUTHORITY Decision No: 42/94 Dated the 23rd day of June 1994 IN THE MATTER of the Broadcasting Act 1989 AND IN THE MATTER of a complaint by CASINO CONTROL AUTHORITY of Auckland Broadcaster RADIO NEW ZEALAND LIMITED I. W. Gallaway Chairperson J. R. Morris R. A. Barraclough L. M. Dawson...

Decisions
Southland Fuel Injection Ltd and Television New Zealand Ltd - 1994-091
1994-091

BEFORE THE BROADCASTING STANDARDS AUTHORITY Decision No: 91/94 Dated the 29th day of September 1994 IN THE MATTER of the Broadcasting Act 1989 AND IN THE MATTER of a complaint by SOUTHLAND FUEL INJECTION LIMITED Broadcaster TELEVISION NEW ZEALAND LIMITED I W Gallaway Chairperson J R Morris R A Barraclough L M Loates...

Decisions
Canterbury Health Ltd and Television New Zealand Ltd - 1998-104
1998-104

BEFORE THE BROADCASTING STANDARDS AUTHORITY Decision No: 1998-104 Dated the 10th day of September 1998 IN THE MATTER of the Broadcasting Act 1989 AND IN THE MATTER of a complaint by CANTERBURY HEALTH LIMITED of Christchurch Broadcaster TELEVISION NEW ZEALAND LIMITED S R Maling Chairperson L M Loates R McLeod J Withers...

Decisions
New Zealand Fire Service and TV3 Network Services Ltd - 1996-182
1996-182

BEFORE THE BROADCASTING STANDARDS AUTHORITY Decision No: 1996-182 Dated the 17th day of December 1996 IN THE MATTER of the Broadcasting Act 1989 AND IN THE MATTER of a complaint by NEW ZEALAND FIRE SERVICE Broadcaster TV3 NETWORK SERVICES LIMITED J M Potter Chairperson L M Loates R McLeod A Martin...

Decisions
Christian Heritage Party and Television New Zealand Ltd - 1994-033
1994-033

BEFORE THE BROADCASTING STANDARDS AUTHORITY Decision No: 33/94 Dated the 2nd day of June 1994 IN THE MATTER of the Broadcasting Act 1989 AND IN THE MATTER of a complaint by CHRISTIAN HERITAGE PARTY of Christchurch Broadcaster TELEVISION NEW ZEALAND LIMITED I. W. Gallaway Chairperson J. R. Morris R. A. Barraclough L. M. Dawson...

Decisions
McLean, Hardy, Bennett and Henry, and Pacific Coast FM - 2007-098
2007-098

Complaint under section 8(1)(b) of the Broadcasting Act 1989Pacific Coast FM – interview with Coromandel resident Bill Muir discussing local politics in Whitianga – during the item Mr Muir made a number of critical statements alleging serious misconduct by members of the local district council and community board – allegedly in breach of good taste and decency, balance, accuracy, fairness and social responsibility standards Findings Principle 5 (fairness) – item named people who were accused of unsubstantiated illegal activity – host did not challenge Mr Muir when he made the allegations – Mr Muir’s statements went beyond acceptable comment on political activity – unfair – upheld Principle 4 (balance) – item discussed a controversial issue of public importance – broadcaster failed to make reasonable efforts to obtain other significant perspectives – upheld Principle 6 (accuracy) – not within the Authority’s jurisdiction to determine allegations of criminal behaviour – decline to determine under section…...

Decisions
Osmose New Zealand and Television New Zealand Ltd - 2005-115
2005-115

Complaint under section 8(1)(a) of the Broadcasting Act 1989Close Up – item about timber treatment T1. 2 or TimberSaver – discussed concerns that the product was defective and putting homes at risk – allegedly unbalanced, inaccurate and unfairFindingsStandard 4 (balance) – seen overall, item seriously criticised TimberSaver product – no scientific evidence provided to refute criticisms – no evidence provided of quality and suitability of product – unbalanced – upheld Standard 5 (accuracy) – scientist on programme not independent – conflict of interest – contrary to guideline 5e – upheld – other aspects of accuracy complaint not upheld Standard 6 (fairness) – seen overall, item unfair to Osmose – upheldOrdersBroadcast of a statement Payment of legal costs of $5,000 Payment of costs to the Crown $2,000This headnote does not form part of the decision....

Decisions
Nationwide Guarantee Corporation Ltd and Television New Zealand Ltd - 1994-002
1994-002

BEFORE THE BROADCASTING STANDARDS AUTHORITY Decision No: 2/94 Dated the 19th day of January 1994 IN THE MATTER of the Broadcasting Act 1989 AND IN THE MATTER of a complaint by NATIONWIDE GUARANTEE CORPORATION LIMITED of Auckland Broadcaster TELEVISION NEW ZEALAND LIMITED I. W. Gallaway Chairperson J. R. Morris R. A. Barraclough L. M. Dawson...

Decisions
Boyce and Television New Zealand Ltd - 2001-049, 2001-050
2001-049–050

Complaint Holmes – series of items on the "brain drain" – Richard Poole – newspaper advertisement – Business Roundtable backing – unbalanced – news source lacked integrity FindingsStandard G6 – items lacked balance – broadcaster not impartial – Poole’s integrity not forcefully challenged – uphold Standard G15 – Poole an "information source" as required by standard – broadcaster failed to ascertain adequately his integrity/reliability – uphold OrdersBroadcast of statement$2,000 costs to Crown This headnote does not form part of the decision. Summary Items broadcast on the Holmes show on TV One on 4, 5 and 6 October 2000 dealt with a perceived "brain drain" whereby young, educated New Zealanders were allegedly leaving New Zealand permanently for better jobs and an enhanced lifestyle overseas. Holmes is broadcast between 7. 00pm and 7. 30pm on weekdays....

Decisions
Walsh and TV3 Network Services Ltd - 1994-003
1994-003

BEFORE THE BROADCASTING STANDARDS AUTHORITY Decision No: 3/94 Dated the 17th day of February 1994 IN THE MATTER of the Broadcasting Act 1989 AND IN THE MATTER of a complaint by DARA WALSH of Hobsonville Broadcaster TV3 NETWORK SERVICES LIMITED I. W. Gallaway Chairperson J. R. Morris R. A. Barraclough L. M. Dawson...

Decisions
Zohs and and CanWest TVWorks Ltd - 2004-112
2004-112

Complaint under section 8(1)(a) of the Broadcasting Act 19893 News – item about young Sri Lankan woman who had been deported – release of woman’s lawyer’s letter when lawyer was criticised by Minister of Immigration – allegedly unbalanced, inaccurate, unfair to lawyer and failed to maintain standards consistent with the maintenance of law and orderFindings Standard 2 (law and order) – no principles of law involved – not upheld Standard 4 (balance) – lawyer not given opportunity to respond to Minister’s criticism – upheld Standard 5 (accuracy) – misleading as to source of letter – upheld Standard 6 (fairness) – unfair to lawyer – upheldOrder Broadcast of a statementThis headnote does not form part of the decision. Broadcast [1] Recent developments in the case of a young Sri Lankan woman who had been deported were covered in an item broadcast on 3 News on TV3 beginning at 6....

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