Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Crossing the line into idle bigotry

145 Responses

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  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to Scott Chris,

    in that a state broadcaster has more incumbent responsibility to uphold ethical standards than does a privately owned regional newspaper.

    There's not a word in that I'd agree with. Sorry.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 11988 posts Report Reply

  • Scott Chris, in reply to Stephen Judd,

    Cox has no right to appear in a newspaper

    Yes but the newspaper has the right to publish Cox's opinion - within reason. Cox's views are representative of a considerable number of people in my experience, so regardless of the inanity of those sentiments, perhaps their purveyors have the right to be heard.

    Auckland • Since Feb 2012 • 167 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Scott Chris,

    within reason

    exactly

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16659 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Scott Chris,

    perhaps their purveyors have the right to be heard

    any 'right' to speech is always balanced against other people's rights not to be harmed.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16659 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Sacha,

    a state broadcaster has more incumbent responsibility to uphold ethical standards than does a privately owned regional newspaper

    Not under our current laws. Publishing is a privilege that brings repsonsibilities.

    No, actually. Leaving aside general laws on privacy, defamation, contempt, etc, there is no statutory regulation of print media in New Zealand.

    The Press Council is an example of industry self-regulation. The only companies subject to its decisions are those who have voluntarily chosen to be subject to them – as the Waikato Times has. I have pointed this out to Scott and Angus.

    Some print media – NBR, notably – have chosen not to make themselves subject to the Press Council. The council might still choose to consider complaints against NBR, but it can’t oblige NBR to publish or otherwise comply with its decisions.

    The Broadcasting Standards Authority, on the other hand, is a statutory body with some statutory powers – including taking a broadcaster off air for a short period, or forbidding it to run advertising for a similarly short period.

    The most commonly-cited rationale for this is that they’re using a limited public resource — the radio spectrum – but it also relates to the historic power and reach of broadcasting as compared to print.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18877 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Russell Brown,

    Leaving aside general laws on privacy, defamation, contempt

    That's part of the balance I was referring to, but thank you for correcting about the print industry situation. Please read my 'publishing' as including broadcasting as well.

    The argument about public vs privately owned doesn't fly in any case.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16659 posts Report Reply

  • Stephen Judd, in reply to Scott Chris,

    perhaps their purveyors have the right to be heard.

    Why? You have exactly put your finger on it there. Seems to me you're saying that if racists are numerous enough, newspapers are obliged to print racist vilification*. Is that an unfair summary of your position?

    * as opposed to leaving them to start their own racist newspaper.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 2962 posts Report Reply

  • Ana Simkiss,

    Speaking of lazy op eds, anyone have the fortitude to read all of Bob Jones' epistle in the herald ? The headline "it's retarded and gay not to see funny side of life." hear that everyone? If you don't think Bob is funny you're retarded and gay. Or something.

    Freemans Bay • Since Nov 2006 • 125 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Russell Brown,

    there is no statutory regulation of print media in New Zealand

    There are statutory privileges in terms of exclusions from some laws and access to places like courts.

    Those used to be offset by media's responsibility to talk truth to power on behalf of ordinary citizens. That duty not being properly codified in law should perhaps be remedied.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16659 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Stephen Judd,

    obliged to print

    Libertarians seem to think we all simply must listen to their teen witterings. Not sure why that is.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16659 posts Report Reply

  • Stephen Judd, in reply to Scott Chris,

    the newspaper has the right to publish Cox’s opinion

    Yes, and I have the right to condemn them for that. Again, the odd conflation of freedom of speech with freedom from criticism.

    Newspapers are inherently selective. That's what the job of an editor is, ffs.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 2962 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to Ana Simkiss,

    Speaking of lazy op eds, anyone have the fortitude to read all of Bob Jones’ epistle in the herald ?

    I hit myself in the face with my laptop after the iridology puff piece and the latest round of "oy noes, Auckland is being ruined by a super-slutty mega brothel" NIMBY-ism. I guess it's cheaper than paying a thug to come around every morning and hit one.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 11988 posts Report Reply

  • DeepRed, in reply to Kyle Matthews,

    I was tremendously happy that we’d exported him to Australia and they were paying for us to not see him being a dick. We could pass a hat around couldn’t we for them to keep him?

    Someone on the Stuff/NZH forums suggested he try his luck in the States. Faux News would probably have a seat warmed for him.

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 4300 posts Report Reply

  • Geoff Lealand,

    As much as I love my hometown, I do have to say that we are not well-served by current Nat Members of Parliament nor by by former Nat MPs. Cox is a nong, and the current incumbents (Tim McIndoe in Ham West and David Bennett in Ham East) are no-nothing politicians.

    Screen & Media Studies, U… • Since Oct 2007 • 2311 posts Report Reply

  • Chris Waugh, in reply to Ana Simkiss,

    Speaking of lazy op eds, anyone have the fortitude

    No, I didn't. The headline was more than enough. And I didn't want to ruin a morning made happy by somebody in the NZ media __finally__ noticing that New Zealand companies are getting caught exporting substandard infant formula to China. Far more important than silly old men in my book.

    Beijing • Since Jan 2007 • 2099 posts Report Reply

  • Chris Waugh, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    I guess it’s cheaper than paying a thug to come around every morning and hit one.

    Oh, I dunno. I'd recommend leaving an old brick next to your laptop for head banging purposes. Replacing that if you broke it would be much cheaper than replacing a laptop screen that suddenly acquired an imprint of your nose and forehead.

    Beijing • Since Jan 2007 • 2099 posts Report Reply

  • Joe Wylie, in reply to Chris Waugh,

    I'd recommend leaving an old brick next to your laptop for head banging purposes.

    Should anyone have the misfortune to lose an eye as a result of head banging, and wind up sporting a glass one, there's always the compensation of presenting said eye for an iridology consultation. I know of a one-eyed sceptic who couldn't resist a free session on offer at a new age fair in NSW a few years ago, and was told fascinating stuff about his constitution, all deduced from his artificial eye.

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 3498 posts Report Reply

  • Angus Robertson, in reply to Adam Gifford,

    Taseer's explanation of the rise of madrassa - are these not charter schools?

    They are schools where they teach salafist Islam and almost nothing else. They have successfully changed the culture within two generationsm, as Taseer notes in her very good essay.

    Auckland • Since May 2007 • 984 posts Report Reply

  • Scott Chris, in reply to Stephen Judd,

    Yes, and I have the right to condemn them for that.

    Exactly. That is how public discourse should be conducted. Openly.

    Seems to me you’re saying that if racists are numerous enough, newspapers are obliged to print racist vilification*

    I'm not saying they are obliged to publish those views but I don't think they should be forbidden from doing so. It is a measure of a society as to how it reacts to such opinions.

    Auckland • Since Feb 2012 • 167 posts Report Reply

  • Scott Chris, in reply to Russell Brown,

    The only companies subject to its decisions are those who have voluntarily chosen to be subject to them – as the Waikato Times has. I have pointed this out to Scott and Angus.

    Yes and you also pointed out that:

    ….. it is an opinion column and not a news story, meaning it will be judged on a different basis to, say, the infamous ‘Asian Angst’ story in North & South, which the Press Council found breached standards not only of accuracy, but discrimination.


    Apart from anything else, I don’t think voluntarily agreeing to uphold a set of standards is practicably compatible with the desperate struggle to even retain market share. Self preservation and self interest will ultimately win out.

    Auckland • Since Feb 2012 • 167 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Scott Chris,

    I’m not saying they are obliged to publish those views but I don’t think they should be forbidden from doing so. It is a measure of a society as to how it reacts to such opinions.

    For the umpteenth time, Scott, if this does get to the Press Council, they'll be accountable to press standards to which they chose to subscribe -- that subscription earning them a reputational benefit. It's not "society" "forbidding" the publication of certain things.

    This tosh being printed is most likely an editorial failure. Someone really should have said "this is bullshit -- write a proper column". The editor himself may now decide along those lines -- that's his right.

    And it's probably worth tossing in an explanation I used on Facebook yesterday, with respect to the idea that opinion columns need not pay any attention to facts ...

    If I write an opinion column saying I personally think someone is a rotter, that's basically okay. If I write a column that says someone is a rapist, and that's not true, I can expect to hear from defamation lawyers.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18877 posts Report Reply

  • Scott Chris,

    Russell, my argument is based on my opinion and rationale, not regulation.

    Auckland • Since Feb 2012 • 167 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson, in reply to Ana Simkiss,

    Speaking of lazy op eds, anyone have the fortitude to read all of Bob Jones' epistle in the herald ?

    I did. It's a parody account, surely?

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8519 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Scott Chris,

    Russell, my argument is based on my opinion and rationale, not regulation.

    I just don't understand what you're saying. That no one should be able to make a press standards complaint to an organisation that invites press standards complaints?

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18877 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Scott Chris,

    Self preservation and self interest will ultimately win out

    So morality and acting in a greater good don't exist in your world? How sad.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16659 posts Report Reply

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