J Knight vs Television New Zealand (complaint to Broadcasting Standards Authority)
Findings of a Broadcasting Standards Authority investigation into a televised item about a celebration in the small Bay
of Islands community of Russell have been released. The item was on Te Karere, the news bulletin in the Maori language.
The BSA noted Television NZ Limited had not retained a copy of the subtitled version of the programme and accordingly
they were unable to determine the complaint.
"The subtitles in fact referred to objections of local pakeha," said Jacqui Knight, the complainant. "Many people - both
Maori and pakeha - made submissions on this particular Resource Consent Application. Under the Resource Management Act
anyone affected by an application is entitled to make a submission - and just because you have an opinion does not make
you a 'redneck'."
She said that she believed the Te Karere reporting had not only been unfair, but also completely unwarranted.
"Considering the way in which so many of us in Russell work together for the community I think it was very sad," she
commented. "The celebration covered in the news item was meant to be just that, a joyous occasion. It should never have
been given a political slant."
"I hope that TVNZ will be more positive and responsible in their reporting in future. And improve their filing system!"