17 November 2017
BSA finds Newshub item required warning
The Broadcasting Standards Authority has found that a Newshub item, which reported on the shooting of two Israeli police
officers at the Al-Aqsa Mosque in East Jerusalem, should have carried an audience advisory alerting viewers to
potentially disturbing content.
The item featured footage of police officers being chased and shot at, a man being surrounded and shot at, a shot of a
pixelated dead body lying in the street, and a covered body on a stretcher being loaded in a van. Some of the footage
was also accompanied by audio of gun shots.
The Authority accepted that “[t]here was public interest in the item, and in reporting on important and newsworthy
events in East Jerusalem…”
However, the Authority found that an audience advisory was required to alert viewers to the item’s violent content.
Warnings are used to enable parents and caregivers to make informed choices about whether they should view, or allow
children to view, broadcasts.
“Cumulatively this violent content had the potential to upset or disturb viewers. While the introduction to the item
signposted to an extent the subject matter of the item, it did not adequately prepare viewers for the material that
followed and we think an explicit warning was needed to alert viewers to the nature of the footage that would be shown.”
On this basis the Authority upheld the complaint under the good taste and decency, children’s interests and violence
standards. The Authority did not uphold the complaint under the law and order standard.