BSA Lowers Not Upholds the Standard

Family First NZ says that claims by the Broadcasting Standards Authority (BSA) that there is a softening of attitudes towards foul language and offensive material on television is because of their failure to enforce any standard.

“The term ‘Broadcasting Standards Authority’ is an oxymoron, and the board simply cannot be depended on to act in the best interests of the welfare and safety of our community and families,” says Bob McCoskrie, National Director of Family First NZ.

“It is laughable that they suggest that opposition to foul language is decreasing based on a 2006 study yet acknowledge that the number of complaints for foul language in the past six months is double the previous six months, and admit that they only upheld 2 complaints – with no sanctions.”

“Complaints made to the BSA regarding the standard of good taste and decency average a 4% success rate, so it is hardly surprising that people simply shrug their shoulders and say ‘what can we do’, ‘who will listen to our concerns’ when they are confronted with objectionable material.”

“Parents do not want their children bombarded with foul language and sexual content – yet broadcasters are pushing the boundaries with little to no retribution.”

A Family First investigation of 15 programmes on four free-to-air channels between 6pm and 8.30pm over a period covering November 4 – 13 last year found a saturation of foul language, sexual innuendo, and promotion of Adult-Only programmes.

Words featured during supposed ‘family viewing’ times included b**ch, fu*k, a*s, pi**, bast**d, bl**dy, and included expressions such as “holy f**k”, “s*x with your mother”, “shove bottle up his a** ”, and “a** bit** ”.

“If one wants to understand why violence, sexual assaults and offensive language are more and more common, we only need to look at the amoral and dangerous decisions being handed down by the BSA,” says Mr McCoskrie.

“Television needs to clean up its act but the BSA is the last place to look to achieve this goal.”

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