Research Ngā Rangahau

Māori Worldviews and Broadcasting Standards: What Should Be the Relationship? 2009


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Māori Worldviews and Broadcasting Standards PDF (745.8 KB)

Date published: April 2009

Author: Broadcasting Standards Authority


  • Provides a platform for further discussion of the question about the proper relationship between broadcasting standards and Māori worldviews and interests


  • The BSA receives few complaints about Māori programmes and issues, or from Māori complainants
  • Most are made under balance, fairness, and accuracy standards
  • Freedom of speech allows Māori to be criticized but also preserves the right of Māori broadcasters to tell Māori stories from a Māori perspective
  • There is some conflict between Māori notions of privacy and BSA privacy principles
  • Māori broadcasters and journalists may define balance differently, but
  • Many agree that the standards should be universal, but interpreted in a more culturally enlightened manner
  • Improving the portrayal of Māori society and te ao Māori in the mainstream media requires a multi-pronged approach
  • The BSA’s mandate does not extend to the underlying causes, the factors which contribute to a broadcast environment in which fair and informed coverage of Māori and te ao Māori continue to be problematic
  • BSA has a role to play in persuading broadcasters to voluntarily agree to guidelines which, while carrying no legal force, can still go some way to raising awareness and changing attitudes among broadcasters
  • The question for broadcasters and those who care about broadcasting in New Zealand is whether that change should be the result of legislative change or a voluntary move from within the industry to examine itself and seek ways to improve the picture for Māori – and, indeed, for all New Zealanders