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Fox and Radio New Zealand Ltd - 1999-010
1999-010

SummaryAn interview with physicist Dr Paul Davies focussed on what the interviewer described as "one of the world’s greatest mysteries, how did life first get started" in an episode of the BBC series, Discovery, broadcast on National Radio on 7 October 1998. Dr Davies hypothesised on the processes of mutation and natural selection, and the possible injection of information into genomes through Darwinian evolution. Mr Fox complained to Radio New Zealand Limited, the broadcaster, that Dr Davies’ comments were inaccurate and unbalanced. He said it was incorrect to state that mutation and natural selection increased information in the genome. The programme, he wrote, should have included the Creationist view about the origin of information in living things. Responding, RNZ denied that the comments were inaccurate, and pointed out that they were the scientifically-based opinions of Dr Davies, had been identified as such, and were reported truthfully and accurately....

Decisions
Kemp and Television New Zealand Ltd - 2022-058 (20 July 2022)
2022-058

The Authority has not upheld a complaint regarding a 1 News item. The item opened by referring to ‘weeks of tension between Jews and Christians in Israel’. This was inaccurate as the item reported on tensions between Israelis and Palestinians during a period of overlapping religious holidays. The broadcaster acknowledged the reference to Christians was an error, but did not uphold the original complaint as the error was ‘implicitly corrected by the full context of the story’. The Authority found, given the item immediately following reported on violence between Muslim and Jewish people, the inaccuracy in the introduction was unlikely to mislead the audience overall. The fairness standard did not apply. Not Upheld: Accuracy, Fairness...

Decisions
Anderson and Māori Television Service - 2020-134 (15 October 2020)
2020-134

The Authority has not upheld a complaint about references to Advance NZ/New Zealand Public Party co-leader Billy Te Kahika spreading misinformation and conspiracy theories, during a panel discussion on Te Ao with Moana. The episode included two online panel discussions about the issue of misinformation on social media and its implications for Māori in particular. Noting that two other episodes of the programme broadcast in the preceding weeks had allowed considerable time to Mr Te Kahika to put forward his position on these issues, the Authority did not find any breach of the balance, accuracy or fairness standards. Not Upheld: Balance, Accuracy, Fairness...

Decisions
Foster and Radio New Zealand Ltd - 2020-125 (16 March 2021)
2020-125

An item on RNZ’s Midday Report reported ‘Scientists warn polar bears may become extinct by the end of the century because of climate change. ’ The complainant alleged climate change was not threatening polar bears as reported in the item. The Authority found the statements in the item were clearly framed as predictions, and attributed as being the scientists’ view. Therefore, they were analysis and opinion (rather than statements of fact) and the accuracy standard did not apply. Reporting on the predicted future impact of declining sea ice on polar bear survival, as shown in studies, did not amount to a discussion of a controversial issue, so the balance standard did not apply. Not Upheld: Accuracy, Balance, Programme Information...

Decisions
Perrott and Television New Zealand Ltd - 2020-160 (20 April 2021)
2020-160

The Authority did not uphold an accuracy complaint about a 1 News item on the use of interlocking concrete blocks to curb coastal erosion on the West Coast. The complaint was that the item inaccurately referred to the location shown in the clip as Granity, rather than Hector, which devalues property in Granity. Given longstanding concerns about coastal erosion spanning across three towns within a small geographical area, including Granity, the Authority did not find any material inaccuracy likely to significantly affect the audience’s understanding of the item as a whole.   Not Upheld: Accuracy...

Decisions
Hogan and Discovery Ltd - 2021-089 (10 November 2021)
2021-089

The Authority has not upheld a complaint alleging an item on Newshub Live at 6pm breached the accuracy standard. The item reported on inconsistencies and ‘a backdown of sorts’ regarding a discussion document on proposed changes to hate speech laws in New Zealand. The Prime Minister and Justice Minister were accused of contradicting each other and the discussion document. As the item was political comment and analysis, the accuracy standard does not apply. Not Upheld: Accuracy...

Decisions
Dewar and Television New Zealand Ltd - 1991-029
1991-029

Download a PDF of Decision No. 1991-029:Dewar and Television New Zealand Ltd - 1991-029 PDF476. 89 KB...

Decisions
Jaspers and Television New Zealand Ltd - 2016-095 (19 April 2017)
2016-095

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. ]An item on 1 News reported on the Labour Party’s ‘Ready for Work’ policy, which offered unemployed young people employment on the minimum wage in environmental and community projects for six months. The item reported that, according to Labour, the scheme would cost $60 million per year for 10,000 participants. However, the $60-million sum was actually ‘based on participants taking up the scheme for just four months, not the promised six’. The Authority did not uphold a complaint that the item was based on inaccurate and unsubstantiated conclusions made by the reporter featured in the item, which was misleading and damaged the credibility of the Labour Party....

Decisions
Drinnan and MediaWorks TV Ltd - 2020-100 (14 September 2020)
2020-100

The Authority has not upheld a complaint that an item on Newshub Nation about the New Conservative Party breached broadcasting standards. The Authority found that the New Conservative Party was not a recognised section of the community for the purposes of the discrimination and denigration standard, and that the accuracy standard did not apply as the complaint concerned matters of analysis and opinion rather than statements of fact. The Authority also found that the New Conservative Party and Party members were not treated unfairly, noting that the scrutiny of political parties is a vital component of freedom of expression, and is of particular importance in the lead-up to a general election. Not Upheld: Fairness, Accuracy, Discrimination and Denigration...

Decisions
Collier and Fong and Television New Zealand Ltd - 2012-137
2012-137

An application for leave to appeal this decision was refused by the High Court: CIV 2013-485-1234 [2013] NZHC 1386 PDF59....

Decisions
CA and Television New Zealand Ltd - 2019-042 (29 October 2019)
2019-042

The Authority did not uphold a complaint that an episode of Sunday about voluntary ‘DIY’ sperm donation in New Zealand, and in particular the complainant’s history of frequent sperm donations, breached broadcasting standards relating to privacy, fairness and accuracy. The Authority found there was a high level of public interest in discussing the risks associated with using DIY sperm donors, as well as CA’s extensive donation history in particular, which outweighed the potential harm to CA. The Authority concluded the programme did not disclose any private information about CA, and overall CA was treated fairly and was given a fair and reasonable opportunity to comment in response to allegations made about him in the programme. Doorstepping CA (approaching him on the street with cameras rolling) was not unfair in the circumstances, and he willingly engaged in a lengthy interview with the reporter....

Decisions
Parker and MediaWorks TV Ltd - 2019-069 (16 December 2019)
2019-069

In an episode of The AM Show, host, Duncan Garner, interviewed economist Cameron Bagrie on the topic of dropping interest rates. During the interview, Mr Bagrie commented regarding the risk of people no longer putting money in the bank, saying, ‘the banks need the money in the bank, because they gotta … get a dollar in the door before they can put the money out the door in the form of a loan. ’ The Authority did not uphold the complaint that the item breached the accuracy standard. The Authority found that Mr Bagrie’s statement was clearly distinguishable as analysis, comment or opinion so the accuracy standard does not apply. Not Upheld: Accuracy...

Decisions
Yuan and Discovery NZ Limited - 2022-044 (18 May 2022)
2022-044

The Authority did not uphold a complaint that a Newshub Live at 6pm report into the crash of China Eastern Flight MU5735 breached the accuracy, fairness, and discrimination and denigration standards. The complaint was in relation to speculation the crash might have been due to a deliberate act from the cockpit. The Authority acknowledged, while the discussion on the recently occurring tragedy may have been distressing to some viewers, the words were clearly stated as commentary, analysis and opinion, rather than fact, and therefore the accuracy standard did not apply. No discrimination or denigration was found, and the fairness standard did not apply. Not Upheld: Accuracy, Fairness, Discrimination and Denigration...

Decisions
Dobson and Television New Zealand Ltd - 2022-118 (8 February 2023)
2022-118

The Authority has not upheld a complaint two items on 1 News reporting on a political poll and interviewing several New Zealanders on the street breached multiple broadcasting standards. The complainant alleged the proportion of people interviewed was not an accurate or balanced representation of the political mood of the country, which was unfair to political parties, and certain comments constituted discrimination and denigration, or were inaccurate or unfair. The Authority held it was not a breach of broadcasting standards to feature ‘vox-pop’ interviews in proportions that do not match current political polling, and the standards either did not apply or were not breached in relation to other issues raised by the complainant concerning the broadcast. Not Upheld: Discrimination and Denigration, Balance, Accuracy, Fairness...

Decisions
Wakeman and Television New Zealand Ltd - 2023-005 (30 May 2023)
2023-005

The Authority has declined to determine six complaints about various TVNZ broadcasts, under several standards, as the concerns related to the complainant’s personal preferences on what should be broadcast, issues raised had recently been dealt with and did not warrant further determination and/or the standards raised did not relate to the relevant complaint. Two complaints were also trivial. Decline to determine (section 11(a) of the Broadcasting Act 1989 – trivial; and section 11(b) in all the circumstances the complaint should not be determined): Balance, Accuracy, Fairness, Discrimination and Denigration, Offensive and Disturbing Content...

Decisions
Girardin and Discovery NZ Ltd - 2023-039 (9 August 2023)
2023-039

The Authority has not upheld a complaint that an item on AM concerning the imminent arrival to Aotearoa New Zealand of Kellie-Jay Keen-Minshull, also known as Posie Parker, breached broadcasting standards. The complainant alleged the broadcast was unfair, inaccurate and denigrated Parker by describing her as ‘anti-trans’, that such a description ‘could well increase the likelihood of violent antisocial protests’ at her events, and that the item was also unbalanced. The Authority found that, given Parker’s views, the description ‘anti-trans activist’ was not unfair given its literal accuracy, and the brief item did not otherwise breach broadcasting standards. Not Upheld: Fairness, Accuracy, Promotion of Illegal or Antisocial Behaviour, Balance, Discrimination and Denigration...

Decisions
Benefield and Discovery NZ Ltd - 2023-069 (16 January 2024)
2023-069

The Authority has declined to determine a complaint that a promo for ThreeNow programme I am Jazz breached multiple standards. The Authority has previously considered similar complaints concerning the inclusion of members of the rainbow community, including trans people, in programmes and saw no reason to depart from previous findings concerning this matter. Decline to determine (section 11(b) of the Broadcasting Act 1989, in all the circumstances): Offensive and Disturbing Content, Children’s Interests, Balance, Accuracy...

Decisions
Carter and Television New Zealand Ltd - 2023-113 (20 February 2024)
2023-113

The Authority has not upheld a complaint regarding an item on 1News covering a Hobson’s Pledge campaign against bilingual road signage. The complaint was that the coverage was biased and unfair by suggesting feedback using the Hobson’s Pledge template was ‘bad’, trying to influence how people gave feedback, and only interviewing members of the public in support of bilingual signage. The Authority found the broadcaster provided sufficient balance and the item was not unfair, as Hobson’s Pledge was given an opportunity to comment, and its position was adequately presented in the item. The complaint did not identify any inaccurate statement or reasons why the item was inaccurate, and the discrimination and denigration standard did not apply. Not Upheld: Balance, Accuracy, Fairness, Discrimination and Denigration...

Decisions
Eady and Television New Zealand Ltd - 2023-067 (7 November 2023)
2023-067

The Authority has declined to determine a complaint that the presentation of a 1 News Kantar Public poll concerning support for political parties ahead of the 2023 general election was misleading. The Authority has previously determined that excluding undecided voters from poll figures was not inaccurate, and the issue of poll figures adding to 100% did not require our determination. On this basis the Authority considered it appropriate to decline to determine the complaint. Declined to determine (section 11(b) of the Broadcasting Act 1989, in all the circumstances): Accuracy...

Decisions
Brevoort, Pridham & Stone and Television New Zealand Ltd - 2021-154 (21 March 2022)
2021-154

The Authority has not upheld complaints alleging a report regarding vaccination decreasing chances of COVID-19 infection on 1 News was inaccurate and misleading. The broadcaster made reasonable efforts to ensure the accuracy of the statements about transmission rates. Use of the terms ‘fully immune’ and ‘full immunity’ were not misleading in the context of the broadcast. Not Upheld: Accuracy...

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