BSA Decisions Ngā Whakatau a te Mana Whanonga Kaipāho

All BSA's decisions on complaints 1990-present

Visser and Television New Zealand Ltd - 2010-189

  • Peter Radich (Chair)
  • Leigh Pearson
  • Te Raumawhitu Kupenga
  • Mary Anne Shanahan
  • Edward Visser
One News
TV One

Authority declines to accept the complaint on the grounds that it does not have jurisdiction to do so.

This headnote does not form part of the decision.


[1]   Between 5 and 7 November 2010 on One News, a number of items reported the performance of New Zealand rowers at the World Rowing Championships at Lake Karapiro.


[2]    Edward Visser complained that the items hardly included any reports on the performance of “foreign competitors”.

Broadcaster’s Response to the Complainant

[3]    TVNZ responded that the complaint was a matter of personal preference rather than broadcasting standards.

Referral to the Authority

[4]   Mr Visser asked the Authority to review TVNZ’s decision. He disagreed that his complaint was a matter of personal preference, and argued that TVNZ was “breaching the Charter”.

Authority's Finding

[5]   We note that Mr Visser’s sole complaint was that TV One mostly reported on the performance of New Zealand rowers. We agree with TVNZ that the selection of material to be included in a news item is a matter of editorial discretion, not broadcasting standards. Further, we note that section 5(c) of the Broadcasting Act 1989 states:

Complaints based merely on a complainant’s preferences are not, in general, capable of being resolved by a complaints procedure.

[6]   Mr Visser’s complaint that these news items should have contained more coverage of “foreign competitors” is clearly his own preference rather than a matter of broadcasting standards which could be resolved by this complaints procedure.

[7]   As no issue relating to broadcasting standards was raised, we find that the broadcaster was not required to accept and respond to that complaint under the Broadcasting Act 1989, and this Authority has no jurisdiction to accept a referral of Mr Visser’s complaint.


For the above reasons we decline jurisdiction to accept Mr Visser’s complaint.

Signed for and on behalf of the Authority


Peter Radich
22 February 2011                   


The following correspondence was received and considered by the Authority when it determined this complaint:

1                  Edward Visser’s email to TVNZ – 8 November 2010

2                 TVNZ’s response to Mr Visser – 8 December 2010

3                 Mr Visser’s letters to the Authority – 19 December 2010