The list below contains our recently published decisions, with the latest at the top.
Coast FM News reported that Zero Commission ‘has been making low ball offers’ to shareholders of various companies. A majority of the Authority upheld the complaint that Zero Commission and its shareholders were treated unfairly as no opportunity was given to respond to the claims or the negative impression created. The minority did not consider the item was unfair as Zero Commission could reasonably expect some commentary from time to time that it would not like or agree with. The Authority unanimously declined to uphold the complaint that the use of the term ‘low ball’ was inaccurate as this was a subjective term, not a point of fact. The controversial issues standard was not applicable because the item focused squarely on one company, not a controversial issue of public importance.
Upheld (by majority): Fairness
Not Upheld: Accuracy, Controversial Issues
An item on ONE News reported on KPMG's latest report showing that banks collectively made a record profit in the last financial year. In the second part of the item the reporter gave a 'very basic explanation' of how banks 'make their money'. The Authority declined to uphold complaints that the item was inaccurate and misleading because it was based on the 'money multiplier' model rather than the 'fractional reserve banking' model. Although simplified, the explanation was generally correct.
Not Upheld: Accuracy
An item on 3rd Degree contained an interview with a man who was involved in a family feud over the provisions of his mother’s will. The man described the legal battle with his brothers, and the item showed two old photographs of the brothers, one of whom was WS. The Authority upheld the complaint that WS’ privacy was breached as he had not consented to having his image shown in the programme.
Order: Section 13(1)(d) $1,500 compensation to the complainant for breach of privacy
An item on Morning Report covered a truce between Israel and Hamas during the Gaza conflict. A Palestinian rights activist and an Israeli spokesman were interviewed. The Authority did not uphold the complaint that the item was unbalanced because more air time was given to the Palestinian view, and because no significant point of view was presented from an equivalent Israeli activist. There is no requirement for mathematically equal time to be given to competing perspectives on controversial issues. Sufficient efforts were made during the broadcast to showcase the Israeli, as well as the Palestinian, perspective. Further, listeners could reasonably be expected to be aware of a range of views on the Gaza conflict given the extensive and ongoing coverage of this issue.
Not Upheld: Controversial Issues
A promo for Seven Sharp showed a Pit Bull owner describing the dogs as the ‘most sookiest, goofiest, loyal, loving teddy bears’. The Authority did not uphold a complaint that it was misleading to promote Pit Bulls as ‘good family dogs’. The comments were clearly distinguishable as opinion, so the accuracy standard did not apply.
Not Upheld: Accuracy