Director’s Voice Provide Checks and Balances 20 Jan 2012
- New Zealand Recognised as a Nation of Givers News
- International study praises professionalism of NZ's Teachers News
- Community garden gets the green light News
- New start for rebuilt $10.2m Marshland School News
- Another grant to help returning offenders News
- $13.6m Rawhiti School officially open News
- Hamilton Psychiatrist and Professional Swimmer to Raise Fund News
- Works to start on new Manukau Bus Station News
- Appointment of Queen’s Counsel in 2016 News
- Ratings Changes to Encourage Maori Land Development News
A healthy democracy needs a free and open broadcasting environment.
The recent moves by NZ On Air (NZOA) to question the timing of the broadcast of Inside Child Poverty and then to seek to legal advice on controlling the scheduling of programmes “likely to be an election issue” is counter to their politically neutral position.
The Electoral Commission has stated that Inside Child Poverty: Special Report has not breached the Electoral Act 1993 or Broadcasting Act 1989.
“In the Commission’s view, the programme was not election related for the purposes of sections 221A of the Electoral Act, given the fact that it is issues based and does not feature or comment on politcal parties or candidates contesting the 2011 election or the election itself. In any case, section 221A does not “restrict the publication of any news or comments relating to an election in a … television broadcast made by a broadcaster within the meaning of section 2 of the Broadcasting Act 1989” (refer section 221A(4)). TV3 is the broadcaster in this instance and the programme is a documentary that would clearly fall within the term ‘comment’” – The Electoral Commission.
Under the current system any programmes scheduled during an election period are subject to both the scrutiny of the Broadcasting Standards Authority and the Electoral Commission. These organisations provide a sufficient check on the content of any programme. To load NZOA up with a complicated political brief will only create tension between the funding body, programme makers and broadcasters.
The SDGNZ supports the continued use of the current channels to assess the legality and impartiality of programmes rather than NZOA taking on this role.
The role of NZOA Board Member Stephen McElrea, who is also John Key’s Electorate Chairman and the National Party’s Northern Region Deputy Chairman, is now under scrutiny. Mr McElrea first raised concerns over the screening of the documentary as reported by Tom Frewan.
"Was NZOA aware that this doco was to be scheduled four days before the election?" he [Stephen McElrea] queried on Thursday 17 November 2011 to NZOA Board Chairman, Neil Walter, and Chief Executive, Jane Wrightson.
“While we understand that NZOA board members are often political appointments, our members are very concerned that a board member such as Mr Stephen McElrea would seek to use his position to influence programming when this is clearly not his role,” says Janette Howe (Acting Executive Director, Screen Directors Guild of New Zealand).
“Some SDGNZ members believe that Mr McElrea should resign now that he has shown such a lack of judgement over this issue and many have expressed to me concerns about their projects going forward for funding before the NZ on Air board.”
“Programme makers are worried that their proposals will now be assessed in terms of a perceived political influence rather than simply on the merit of the project,” states Howe.
(Screen Directors Guild of NZ)
5 Feb 2016 News
05 February 2016 Museum of Waitangi set to become a national and visitor Icon The new Museum of Waitangi, opened today by the... more
5 Feb 2016 Business News
Article - BusinessDesk NZ wool prices slip on higher kiwi dollar, reduced demand from China By Tina Morrison Feb. 5 ... more
5 Feb 2016 Business News
Article - BusinessDesk NZ directors more aware of risk, focus on cyber security Feb. 5 (BusinessDesk) - Directors of... more
5 Feb 2016 Lifestyle
4 February 2016What it is to be a Kiwi may depend of where you live – Auckland or elsewhere in New Zealand – with... more
4 Feb 2016 Property
Auckland's house sales volumes jump to 8-year high in January, Barfoot says Feb. 4 (BusinessDesk) - Auckland residential... more
5 Feb 2016 Migration
This Waitangi Day, New Zealand will roll out the welcome mat to 24 new citizens at Government House, and acknowledge over... more
21 Dec 2015 Migration
Article - Businesswire NZ net migrants reach all-time high 63,700 in boom November year for travel By Jonathan Underhill Dec. ... more
22 Jan 2016 Travel & Tourism
New Zealand Government Hon Nicky WagnerMinister of Customs 22 January 2016 More than 100,000 SmartGate users in one week Customs ... more
21 Jan 2016 Travel & Tourism
Wellington ratepayers to pay $8mln over 10 years for Canberra flights Jan. 21 (BusinessDesk) - Wellington City Council is... more
5 Feb 2016 Multisport
70 teams from 11 nations will come together in Kaiteriteri, Tasman this April for the fifth chapter of New Zealand’s premier ... more
22 Jan 2016 Opinion
We seem to be living in an era of virtual government, where governments promote only an illusion of policy kapow! rather than the... more
24 Dec 2015 Opinion
Column - Gordon Campbell Gordon Campbell on the Dotcom extradition decision Inevitably – and with justification –... more
5 Feb 2016 Appointments
New Zealand Government Hon Christopher Finlayson5 February 2016 GCSB Chief Legal Advisor Lisa Fong will become the Acting Director... more
22 Jan 2016 Flying Kiwi*
Warren and Mahoney Heading to Europe And the Olympics of Architecture Architectural graduate Antonia Lapwood has been awarded the... more
11 Dec 2015 Recruitment
11 December 2015 Minister for Tertiary Education, Skills and Employment Steven Joyce and Minister for Social... more
4 Dec 2015 Recruitment
New Zealand Government Hon Steven Joyce Minister for Tertiary Education, Skills and Employment 4 December 2015 Tertiary Education,... more