Research Ngā Rangahau

New Zealand Broadcasting Formal Complaints System 1973–1988

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New Zealand Broadcasting Formal Complaints System 1973–1988 PDF1.69 MB

Date published
:  September 1989

Researcher:  I H McLean


  • Broadcasting Act 1973 – concerned unjust and unfair treatment by public broadcasting corporations administered by the Broadcasting Council of New Zealand
  • Broadcasting Act 1976 – extended the grounds for complaint to include programme standards, and applied also to private broadcasters administered by the Broadcasting Corporation of New Zealand, the Committee of Private Broadcasters and the Broadcasting Tribunal
  • Broadcasting Act 1982 – abolished the Committee of Private Broadcasters, placing initial responsibility on individual private broadcasters for consideration of complaints about their programmes and creating the Broadcasting Complaints Committee
  • Complainants had the right in certain circumstances to refer a complaint, after its consideration by broadcasters and the Broadcasting Complaints Committee, to the Tribunal for determination to counter possibilities of self-serving and charges of broadcasters being their own judges and juries
  • Broadcasters and the Tribunal established systems which had some formality, to do justice to complaints and because of legal implications
  • BCNZ and the Tribunal valued the system: the procedure was effective in allowing an oversight of broadcasting practices, the correction of mistakes, and the development of greater awareness of community standards