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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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
Ministry of Health and CanWest TVWorks Ltd - 2007-012
2007-012

CanWest TVWorks Ltd became TVWorks Ltd on 15 June 2007. Because the programme complained about was broadcast prior to this date, the broadcaster is still named as CanWest TVWorks Ltd (CanWest) except for the purpose of orders....

Decisions
Weir and TV3 Network Services Ltd - 2001-032
2001-032

Complaint"Trial and Error" – 20/20 – David Bain murder trial – Milton Weir defamation action against Joe Karam – Weir’s admission that Bain jury was misled – inadvertent mistake – not first time admitted – unfair, unbalanced, impartial to present otherwise FindingsStandards G4 and G6 – impression given that first time mistake admitted – no evidence that mistake anything other then genuine – implication that Mr Weir might have intentionally misled jury – dramatic choice of language – interview with Assistant Commissioner of Police and reference to Police Complaints Authority’s report inadequate to provide balance/undo suggestion that mistake might have been intentional – uphold Standards G4 and G6 – aspects of complaint regarding evidential significance of mistake not a matter for the Broadcasting Standards Authority – decline to determine Standard G16 – standard concerned with the general viewing public – no uphold Standard G20 – reasonable efforts made to include Mr Weir in…...

Decisions
Prime Minister (Rt Hon Helen Clark) and 4 Others and TV3 Network Services Ltd - 2003-077–081
2003-077–081

Complaint3 News Special – interviews with Nicky Hager and Prime Minister about issues raised in Hager’s book "Seeds of Distrust" – complaints that implication in interview that the book was factually correct was unbalanced and partial – some facts inaccurate – different interview styles unfair – Authority made the following findings: Standard 4 – issues were scientific and government accountability – science aspect – balanced – no uphold; government accountability – not balanced – uphold Standard 5 – scientific facts in dispute – unable to determine; approach to interview with Prime Minister in comparison with the interview with Mr Hager neither impartial nor objective – uphold; statement that Prime Minister declined her earlier offer to do another interview not inaccurate – no uphold Standard 6 – preparation of programme fair – no uphold; presentation of programme – unfair as Prime Minister not advised of source of allegations and the accuser was interviewed in…...

Decisions
Minister of Health (Hon Annette King) and Television New Zealand Ltd - 2004-156
2004-156

Complaint under section 8(1)(a) of the Broadcasting Act 1989 One News – item reported that Plunketline telephone service to be replaced by broader Healthline service – Minister of Health questioned on whether her support for Healthline was consistent with election pledge in 1999 to support Plunketline – allegedly unbalanced and interview edited unfairly Findings Standard 4 (balance) – item omitted Minister’s explanation for the change of her political point of view – unbalanced – upheld Standard 6 (fairness) – item omitted Minister’s comment on central issue – unfair – upheldOrder Broadcast of a statement This headnote does not form part of the decision. Broadcast [1] The replacement of Plunketline, a telephone service for caregivers, with a broader Healthline telephone service was dealt with in an item broadcast on One News beginning at 6. 00pm on TV One on 7 July 2004....

Decisions
Ngati Pukenga Iwi and Television New Zealand Ltd - 2003-109
2003-109

ComplaintHolmes – item regarding registration of Kopukairoa as wāhi tapu – examined the concerns of four landowners affected by the registration – unbalanced – inaccurate – unfair FindingsStandard 4 – failed to present range of views – unbalanced – uphold Standard 5 – factual inaccuracies – partial – uphold Standard 6 – Iwi dealt with unfairly – uphold OrderBroadcast of statementPublish statement in Bay of Plenty Times This headnote does not form part of the decision. Summary [1] The concern of four Pakeha landowners on Kopukairoa, because of the registration of the mountain in the Bay of Plenty as wāhi tapu, was dealt with in an item broadcast on Holmes at 7. 00pm on 18 November 2002. The item included interviews with the four landowners and Mr Toni Paraire who, it was said, represented the views of the local Māori who registered the wāhi tapu....

Decisions
Ngaei, Association of Salaried Medical Specialists and New Zealand Medical Association and Television New Zealand Ltd - 2004-135
2004-135

Complaint under section 8(1)(a) of the Broadcasting Act 1989Holmes – incident involving alleged doctor-on-doctor assault – interviewee commented on profession’s reaction to incident – three complaints – allegedly unbalanced, inaccurate and unfair to doctor and othersFindings Standard 4 (balance) – unbalanced – Mr Ngaei’s viewpoint not advanced – reasonable efforts to obtain his views not made – upheld Standard 5 (accuracy) – item contained inaccuracies – upheld Standard 6 (fairness) – item unfair to Mr Ngaei – upheld Standard 6 (discrimination) – item did not encourage discrimination against doctors – not upheld Orders$1,700 costs to complainant $2,500 costs to CrownThis headnote does not form part of the decision. Broadcast [1] An item on Holmes broadcast at 7....

Decisions
Francis and Television New Zealand Ltd - 2007-041
2007-041

Complaint under section 8(1)(a) of the Broadcasting Act 1989Sunday – interviewed alleged rape victim in high-profile police trials – discussed whether current system in New Zealand was fair to alleged rape victims – allegedly unbalanced Findings Standard 4 (balance) – item omitted crucial information about evidence in police trials which was highly relevant to the controversial issue under discussion – majority uphold No Order This headnote does not form part of the decision. Broadcast [1] An item on Sunday entitled “Justice Denied” was broadcast on TV One at 7. 30pm on 11 March 2007. The item looked at the issues raised by the acquittal of three former Rotorua police officers (Brad Shipton, Bob Schollum and Assistant Police Commissioner Clint Rickards) in respect of a historical rape allegation. The reporter noted that the three men had also been acquitted in the high profile rape trial involving Louise Nicholas....

Decisions
Drury and Daisley and TV3 Network Services Ltd - 1996-130, 1996-131, 1996-132
1996-130–€“132

BEFORE THE BROADCASTING STANDARDS AUTHORITY Decision No: 1996-130 Decision No: 1996-131 Decision No: 1996-132 Dated the 10th day of October 1996 IN THE MATTER of the Broadcasting Act 1989 AND IN THE MATTER of complaints by NICK DRURY (2) of Rotorua and C J DAISLEY of Rotorua Broadcaster TV3 NETWORK SERVICES LIMITED J M Potter Chairperson L M Loates R McLeod A Martin...

Decisions
P and TV3 Network Services Ltd - 1994-021
1994-021

BEFORE THE BROADCASTING STANDARDS AUTHORITY Decision No: 21/94 Dated the 28th day of April 1994 IN THE MATTER of the Broadcasting Act 1989 AND IN THE MATTER of a complaint by Ms P Broadcaster TV3 NETWORK SERVICES LIMITED I. W. Gallaway Chairperson J. R. Morris R. A. Barraclough L. M. Dawson...

Decisions
Spectrum and Bays Television Ltd - 1995-132
1995-132

BEFORE THE BROADCASTING STANDARDS AUTHORITY Decision No: 132/95 Dated the 16th day of November 1995 IN THE MATTER of the Broadcasting Act 1989 AND IN THE MATTER of a complaint by SPECTRUM of Nelson Broadcaster BAYS TELEVISION LIMITED of Nelson J M Potter Chairperson L M Loates R McLeod...

Decisions
Mann and Television New Zealand Ltd - 2001-137
2001-137

ComplaintDocumentary New Zealand: "To Age or Not to Age" – misleading – adverse health outcomes possible – unbalanced – broadcaster (TVNZ) upheld balance complaint – not impartial – broadcaster investigating commissioning possible documentary on dieting and ageing in 2002 – action taken insufficient FindingsImportant information contained in programme – action taken insufficient OrderBroadcast of approved statement This headnote does not form part of the decision. Summary [1] "To Age or Not to Age" was the title of the documentary broadcast by TV One at 8. 30pm on 30 July 2001 in the weekly documentary time slot. Using a number of medical criteria, the programme set out to measure the effectiveness of the approaches promoted by Leslie Kenton for staying healthy and feeling younger....

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