Annual Report 2023

The Annual Report 2023 outlines the Authority's key achievements over the past year and details progress against long term outcomes and objectives. It includes performance information such as complaint determinations and the Authority's financial statements.

A copy of the full report is available for download for the year ended 30 June 2023.
BSA Annual Report 2023 (year 2022/2023)

Introduction from Chair

Tēnā koutou e te hunga e whai pānga ki ngā mahi papaoho, ki a koutou hoki e pānui ana i ēnei kōrero, kā nui te mihi ki a koutou, ki a tātau.

A year of change

This financial year has been one of significant – and positive – change. The year kicked off with our new Code of Broadcasting Standards coming into effect, introducing a streamlined new standards regime which has been positively received over its first year in operation. In September 2022, we welcomed Stacey Wood as our new Chief Executive (bringing a valuable combination of journalism, legal and governance experience to our operations). This year we were also pleased to see significant announcements regarding proposed legislative change which will better respond to the risks in our current environment.

The latter proposals are a sign of transformative change to come. The first proposal would see the BSA administering and monitoring a new fair bargaining framework for news media and digital platforms. The second, the long-awaited Safer Online Services and Media Platforms review, contemplates broader changes to our 30-year-old regulatory regime to better serve the interests of New Zealanders in the modern media environment. Both are necessary responses to changes in the way audiencesnow consume content if we are to maintain a strong and
sustainable New Zealand media sector and appropriately protect New Zealanders from harmful content.

The Authority has focused, and will continue to focus, attention and resource on supporting the progress of such legislative change, offering our expertise to support the development of regulatory regimes best suited to achieving these objectives.


Complaints numbers have dropped from the highs of recent years to a level more reflective of long-term averages, though many have been highly complex. COVID-19 related issues ceased to dominate complaints subject matter this year. Instead, the Authority has been called upon to consider issues over a broad range of subject matters. Significant complaints over the year included those addressing the privacy interests of vulnerable individuals; accuracy and balance concerns in reporting regarding particular organisations/events; and allegations of unfair treatment towards those featured in broadcasts.

With gender identity issues assuming greater prominence in media reporting, we also dealt with a range of complaints on this subject. Some involved challenging assessments of whether the value of a broadcast and the right to freedom of expression (including open discourse and expression of views about issues affecting our society) outweighed any potential harm a broadcast may cause to vulnerable groups.

These types of complaints escalated with media coverage of the March 2023 New Zealand visit of Kellie-Jay Keen Minshull (also known as Posie Parker). In this context, we issued guidance for broadcasters highlighting some of the key matters recognised and determined by the Authority in its decisions on such issues.

Operations, people and stakeholders

Despite the diversity and complexity of complaints over this period, our team continued to manage complaints efficiently, avoiding the backlog issues of previous years – even through periods when members of our small team were out with COVID-19. I remain grateful for the efforts of the team over the year and committed to ensuring the Authority continues to offer a flexible and supportive workplace where everyone has a voice and is rewarded for good work.

Our financial performance has been stronger than anticipated with levy income remaining higher than budgeted. While, as forecast, we operated at a deficit, that deficit was approximately 20% of the anticipated level. Nevertheless, we have seen signs this year of the challenges broadcasters face in the current environment, such as the closure of MediaWorks’ Today FM station and the associated redundancies – demonstrating the ongoing risk to our levy income.

It is also not lost on us that, despite the challenging environment and busy workloads of media organisations today, a number of them have taken time out to work with us on the development of our strategy and the regulatory reform proposals. Working together is the best route to a good outcome and I would like to convey our sincere thanks to those organisations and to our other stakeholders and fellow content regulators that contributed to our work this year.

Ehara taku toa i te toa takitahi, he toa takitini.

My strength is not as an individual, but as a collective.

Susie Staley, MNZM

A limited number of print copies are available. To enquire about a print copy, email:

A media release summarising major themes and achievements from the past year is available here.