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TVNZ 'bullying' a threat to right to complain

Alexander: TVNZ 'bullying' a threat to right to complain

TVNZ's High Court action to overturn a Broadcasting Standards Association ruling comes "dangerously close to outright corporate bullying and is a real threat to the right of citizens and small interest groups to make legitimate complaints", United Future broadcasting spokesman Marc Alexander today.

The court challenge seeks to overturn a BSA ruling that upheld a complaint by Viewers for Television Excellence (VOTE) about the failure to warn viewers prior to a graphic and potentially offensive item on the TV One News in July last year. The item concerned torture, mutilation, rape and killings in Uganda.

"The BSA has ruled, and clearly TVNZ doesn't like its decision. But by taking the matter to court, TVNZ has jeopardised the whole process by which Joe Citizen can now express a view or question standards.

"Next time someone wants to challenge the State broadcaster, will they need to take a second mortgage out on their house to meet court costs?

"Is that how TVNZ intends to silence its critics?"

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