Family First NZ is asking the media to show restraint regarding the comments of Trade Negotiations Minister Phil Goff. Phil Goff is reported as having used offensive language when commenting on opposition to the Free Trade Deal with China.
“Most of the media are quoting the offensive word in full, rather than using a shorter, more appropriate term of ‘BS’, or simply saying that the word was offensive – end of story,” says Bob McCoskrie, National Director of Family First NZ. “In the past, the word would have been ‘beeped’ out or just the initials used.”
“The media need to understand that many families find that language offensive and it is also inappropriate for young people to use in a school or home setting, or to a person of authority.”
“The media can still communicate the essence of the story without compromising the standards of broadcasting. This is especially relevant with news items which are broadcast throughout the day, during children’s television viewing times, and during the radio and television news which many families and young people watch or listen to. Many young people study the newspapers as part of their education as well.”
“Where do we draw the line? Will all offensive comments of politicians and other people be quoted in full, no matter how offensive the language and behaviour is.”
“Broadcasting standards are there for good reason, and it is time that the media showed leadership on maintaining these standards. The story can still be told and reported without confronting people with offensive language,” says Mr McCoskrie. “Families must be protected from having offensive material shoved in their faces.”