New Direct Homes on why they fought back

The BSA said the Fair Go episode was inaccurate and misleading in its depiction of construction issues. file photo/123rf

The owner of a construction company, who took to an episode of the popular TV show Fair Go that the Broadcasting Standards Authority found inaccurate, said he pursued the case “in the interests of businessmen”.

New Homes Direct owner Michael Morrison told the Herald the process of filing a complaint and getting to the decision-making stage was a huge test for them.

“At this stage, we’re just looking at our options. I’ll be meeting with the team to discuss our next steps,” he said.

“The reason we do this is for the benefit of businessmen,” he said.

Morrison’s comments come after New Zealand’s broadcasting regulator backed New Homes Direct’s complaint about the series, which aired last September.

The BSA said due to the nature of the show, standards of privacy and balance were not violated, but agreed that the show was inaccurate and misleading in its depiction of construction issues.

These issues include price changes and the company’s liability for delays and outstanding council invoices.

The BSA found the complainant was unfairly portrayed and that TVNZ failed to take reasonable steps to ensure the programming was accurate and not misleading.

In a statement, the authority said Fair Go’s presentation and discussion of the issue could have caused “unwarranted damage” to the complainant’s reputation.

“We realize that the Fair Go series and its investigation of a variety of consumer issues are of public interest and of high value.

“However, if individuals or organisations mentioned in the broadcast may be adversely affected, their comments must be fairly described.”

Authorities said the broadcaster failed to meet its obligations in this case.

A TVNZ spokesman said the broadcaster accepted the BSA’s decision.

TVNZ has been asked to issue a statement summarizing the authority’s decision and to pay $2000 in legal costs and costs to the complainant and $1000 to the Crown.

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