LISA TEMPLETON AGAINST NEW ZEALAND HERALD
Case Number: 3124
Council Meeting: OCTOBER 2021
Decision: No Grounds to Proceed
Ruling Categories: Columnists Opinion
CASE NO: 3124
RULING BY THE NEW ZEALAND MEDIA COUNCIL ON THE COMPLAINT OF LISA TEMPLETON AGAINST NEW ZEALAND HERALD
FINDING: INSUFFICIENT GROUNDS TO PROCEED
DATE: OCTOBER 2021
The New Zealand Herald ran a column on October 3, 2021 headlined Kerre McIvor: A lockdown business owner’s cry from the heart.
The focus of the column was McIvor’s sympathy for and the messages of support she had received for a small business owner who had lost his business and turned to alcohol.
McIvor wrote about the struggle many people were having during the lockdown and how they were trying hard to obey the rules while the police had given space to Destiny Church executive Brian Tamaki and gangs to do as they pleased.
She said in part “If we’re not out of Level 3 this week, though, I’ll bloody well be signing up to Tamaki’s next protest and bouncing alongside that oleaginous rabble rouser on his Massey Ferg or whatever it is he intends to ride into town on.”
The complainant said she was appalled that this was allowed to be published as it undermined the health approach to Covid-19.
The Media Council said this was an opinion piece in which the writer was expressing the feelings of many as she mused on the pain of Covid-19 and lockdowns. It did not encourage rule breaking. The line which prompted this complaint was a use of hyperbole and was not intended to be taken seriously.
The complainant disagreed with the writer, but that was not enough to advance a complaint that the article breached any Media Council principles.
There were insufficient grounds to proceed.