The Broadcasting Standards Authority has partially upheld a complaint against a segment on Marae, after rainbow community activist Shaneel Lal made an inaccurate statement about Posie Parker.
British activist Kellie-Jay Keen-Minshull, known as Posie Parker, left the country after having tomato juice dumped on her at an Auckland rally.
Keen-Minshull was set to speak as part of her Let Women Speak tour on March 25 but was drowned out by thousands of counter-protesters.
Speaking on the TVNZ program Marae, which aired on April 12, 2023, Lal said Parker had told her followers that “due to the transgender agenda, cisgender women are being kidnapped, blended and put into meat for human consumption.”
The BSA found that the comment would have come across as a statement of fact – which was inaccurate considering Parker had not said that the “transgender agenda” was responsible for that.
“The misleading characterisation of Parker’s statement…strayed into the realm of personal attack.
“It detracted from, rather than contributing to, viewers’ understanding of the issues being discussed – an unfortunate outcome in a broadcast considering such important, topical and contentious issues,” the BSA said.
The complainant had argued that the segment as a whole was inaccurate in multiple respects and disproportionately favoured views against the Let Women Speak events.
However, the BSA found that most of the alleged inaccuracies were unlikely to have significantly affected people’s understanding of the broadcast as a whole.
The majority of the BSA panel found Lal’s comment was materially inaccurate and justified a finding of a breach.
The minority agreed with the conclusions expressed by the majority, but did not agree that any potential harm met the threshold for a breach.
No breach was found in regard to the balance of the segment, as it adequately presented significant viewpoints through the inclusion of multiple guests, host questioning and the intro segment, the BSA found.
The BSA said the Posie Parker visit had led to a number of complaints, most of which had not been upheld.