Clark and The Radio Network Ltd - 2014-018
- Peter Radich (Chair)
- Leigh Pearson
- Te Raumawhitu Kupenga
- Mary Anne Shanahan
- Nathan Clark
ProgrammeDave and Guy Show
BroadcasterThe Radio Network Ltd # 2
Summary [This summary does not form part of the decision.]
The hosts of the Dave and Guy show on Classic Hits encouraged callers to phone in with stories about dealing with unwanted visitors at the front door. One caller joked that he had answered the door ‘stark naked’, surprised that the ‘god botherers’ were an elderly lady and a 16-year-old girl. The Authority did not uphold the complaint that the caller’s comments about ‘indecent exposure’ breached standards. This was clearly intended to be a joke and most listeners would not have been offended taking into account the station’s and the programme’s target audience.
Not Upheld: Good Taste and Decency
 During the Dave and Guy show, the hosts asked, ‘What have you done to hide from people who come to your door and you don’t want them to be there?’ A listener phoned in and said:
[Laughs] I got fed up with the girl hiding behind the curtains all the time because the god botherers were coming up the driveway and banging on the door at ungodly hours… She said, ‘It’s the god botherers again.’ [I] jumped out of bed stark naked and opened the door – bugger – a 78-year-old woman and 16-year-old girl… they have never ever been back…
 The hosts commented through bouts of laughter, ‘You’re blacklisted’ and ‘never again’. The comments were broadcast on Classic Hits at about 5.30pm on Monday 10 February 2014.
 Nathan Clark made a formal complaint to The Radio Network Ltd (TRN), alleging that the caller’s comments about ‘exposing himself’ lacked good taste and decency, and that the caller should be referred to the police.
 The issue is whether the broadcast breached the good taste and decency standard, as set out in the Radio Code of Broadcasting Practice.
 The members of the Authority have listened to a recording of the broadcast complained about and have read the correspondence listed in the Appendix.
Did the broadcast threaten current norms of good taste and decency?
 The good taste and decency standard is primarily aimed at broadcasts containing sexual material, nudity, coarse language or violence.1 The Authority will also consider the standard in relation to any broadcast that portrays or discusses material in a way that is likely to cause offence or distress.2
 We are satisfied that the caller’s comments did not threaten current norms of good taste and decency when taken in context. The comments formed part of a light-hearted anecdote about how the caller dealt with unwelcome visitors at his door. His behaviour, as described in the anecdote, was clearly in the nature of a humorous prank, which was obvious from the way he told the story, the laughter it engendered, and the tone of the topic being discussed. We agree with the broadcaster that there was nothing ‘sinister’ about his comments and they did not describe a ‘dirty or sexual’ act. While the comments were broadcast at 5.30pm on a Monday when children could have been listening, we are satisfied that because they were clearly signalled as a joke, they were not inappropriate for broadcast, especially considering the radio station and the programme are targeted at adults. Most listeners would not have been unduly surprised or offended by the content in this context.
 Accordingly, we decline to uphold the complaint.
For the above reasons the Authority declines to uphold the complaint.
Signed for and on behalf of the Authority
2 May 2014
The correspondence listed below was received and considered by the Authority when it determined this complaint:
1 Nathan Clark’s formal complaint – 11 February 2014
2 TRN’s response to the complaint – 12 February 2014
3 Mr Clark’s referral to the Authority – 19 February 2014
4 TRN’s response to the Authority – 27 February 2014
1Turner and Television New Zealand Ltd
, Decision No. 2008-112
2Practice Note: Good Taste and Decency (Broadcasting Standards Authority, November 2006)