Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Not in front of the children

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  • Russell Brown,

    I'm interested that there's been so little discussion of what I fancied were the main points of the post.

    Those being, the Herald's writer's ignorance of how statutory Broadcasting Standards work, and related panic attack about "banned" words that aren't actually banned.

    Having appeared on TV with Paul Henry many times, I can confirm the impression that in person he is often funny and charming. Unfortunately, on camera, he is sometimes a mean-spirited bully.

    I'm minded of what Newstalk's Bill Francis said on Media7 recently about how those in his charge were often "marginal" personalities -- the same thing that made them vulnerable to dreadful lapses of judgement was what made them work on talk radio.

    His view was that having employed them, he was obliged to front up when their trains inevitably left the rails.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22825 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    LOL Helen, I vote Henry has to make one of the drums on TV, firstly to show he's not PC, then to show he's not retarded.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10650 posts Report Reply

  • Stephen Judd,

    I'm interested that there's been so little discussion of what I fancied were the main points of the post.
    Those being, the Herald's writer's ignorance of how statutory Broadcasting Standards work, and related panic attack about "banned" words that aren't actually banned.

    Dog bites man, I'm afraid.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 3122 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    Can I encourage us not to refer to American websites for pointers about disability language. They're a bit.. retarded.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19706 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Barnes,

    Having appeared on TV with Paul Henry many times, I can confirm the impression that in person he is often funny and charming. Unfortunately, on camera, he is sometimes a mean-spirited bully.

    You mean the camera lies, damn it, whooda thought.
    So, watching your vicious blood chilling attacks on the hapless victims of Media7 is just an illusion?

    Peria • Since Dec 2006 • 5521 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    So, watching your vicious blood chilling attacks on the hapless victims of Media7 is just an illusion?

    I confess, some people whose work we've critiqued this year are convinced it's personal. Generally the same ones who insist they're just doing their job when they do it ...

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22825 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Barnes,

    Generally the same ones who insist they're just doing their job when they do it ...

    Yes, it goes hand in glove with the boot being on the other foot, as they say in places where people wear their hearts on their sleeves.
    Mixed message mangling Monday, metaphorically.

    Peria • Since Dec 2006 • 5521 posts Report Reply

  • Andre Alessi,

    I'm interested that there's been so little discussion of what I fancied were the main points of the post.

    Those being, the Herald's writer's ignorance of how statutory Broadcasting Standards work, and related panic attack about "banned" words that aren't actually banned.

    I guess most people see this sort of thing as dogwhistle posturing rather than a change in policy (or failure in comprehension) from the Herald, which leads back eventually to the question of "Why is this guy on my teevee again?"

    Ultimately, the "anti-PC" griping that is so popular amongst rich white guys like myself drills the meme that we're being "prevented" from saying things, and that's why it's such a threat. Of course, people are never prevented from saying/doing/broadcasting things except in certain very limited, clearly defined situations (most having to do with the workings of the legal system rather than simply "good taste and decency".) We're simply required to stand up and take responsibility for what we say. If we say something offensive, we'd best be prepared to be called out on it, and if we're not prepared to explain, we should be prepared to apologise. If we do neither, we should be prepared to have others call us dicks.

    None of that is suppressing free expression, it's promoting it. If you choose to take an unpopular opinion, be prepared to back it up, or step off and let someone else do it for you.

    Devonport, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 864 posts Report Reply

  • izogi,

    But, because it was CYF, the moral outrage that no one actually seems to be expressing is news all over this morning.

    I woke up to this at 7 and found the whole report very confusing. If the reporter had wanted to make some kind of point, you'd think she could have at least found someone other than herself to speak out against it as opposed to interviewing CYF staff, Downstage staff, and other people present, none of whom seemed to have any serious concerns.

    I thought I may have missed something in my semi-conscious state, but having read the other thoughts here it seems I didn't.

    Wellington • Since Jan 2007 • 1139 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    I'm minded of what Newstalk's Bill Francis said on Media7 recently about how those in his charge were often "marginal" personalities -- the same thing that made them vulnerable to dreadful lapses of judgement was what made them work on talk radio.

    Did he elaborate what he meant by marginal?

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10650 posts Report Reply

  • Phil Lyth,

    Despite the fact that 80% of Aucklanders abhor alliteration I have to say

    Competition canters to Christchurch confabulist?

    My poor attempt to say that Ian Dalziel had better redouble his efforts.

    Wellington • Since Apr 2009 • 458 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Pendant alert: if I recall correctly, the headline in Jaquie Brown was itself an example of assonance, not alliteration.

    Alliteration uses repeated consonants, assonance relies on repeated vowel sounds.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22825 posts Report Reply

  • Paul Litterick,

    NatRad was still going on about the Adagio fiasco on Midday Report. There were gasps, apparently, from members of the audience, when the offending words were spoken and the offending orgasm faked.

    In other news, pantomime audiences were heard to say "ooh" in response to innuendo spoken by men dressed as women and women dressed as boys.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1000 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    We're simply required to stand up and take responsibility for what we say. If we say something offensive, we'd best be prepared to be called out on it, and if we're not prepared to explain, we should be prepared to apologise. If we do neither, we should be prepared to have others call us dicks.

    Ae, that would work well if an equal platform were provided for rebuttal. Hence our broadcasters have traditionally assumed extra responsibility for reasonable and non-demeaning behaviour in exchange for a license and the megaphone that comes with it. The loose campaign of complaint that got Henry's goat is one way of equalising that power.

    Meanwhile, Linley Boniface is told to 'have a laugh' and 'get over it' by those fun-loving 'anti-pc' folk who infest newspaper sites, for publishing this opinion about TVNZ:

    should further staff redundancies be necessary, it could seamlessly replace its current Breakfast host with a freshly captured gibbon without significantly lowering the quality of its journalism.

    Indeed, watching a jungle creature let loose on the set of Breakfast would give viewers roughly the same frisson of appalled fascination that many of us already experience while watching Paul Henry in action. Will the set be trashed? Will there be humping of the furniture? Will guests have their hair lovingly combed through for nits, or be spat at?

    Heh.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19706 posts Report Reply

  • Hadyn Green,

    I would probably enjoy breakfast TV more if there was more swearing and fewer degrading remarks from smug presenters. I'm not sure what my opinion would be if they faked orgasms, I'd probably be against it. (see how I merged threads)

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 2090 posts Report Reply

  • LegBreak,

    Say what you like about Henry, but the ease with which he gets under people’s skin is quite something.

    Unlike Laws, say, who works really hard at it.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1162 posts Report Reply

  • 3410,

    Pendant alert: if I recall correctly, the headline in Jaquie Brown was itself an example of assonance, not alliteration.

    Alliteration uses repeated consonant, assonance relies on repeated vowel sounds.

    Quite so, but as a satirical take on a certain Ak. newspaper, an incorrect headline is surely more approprite than a correct one.

    Auckland • Since Jan 2007 • 2618 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    Having appeared on TV with Paul Henry many times, I can confirm the impression that in person he is often funny and charming. Unfortunately, on camera, he is sometimes a mean-spirited bully.

    I'm not sure what your conclusion is Russell. Does that make it OK? Not OK? Not so bad?

    I'm not sure what's worse: 1. A reasonable person who puts on their arsehole for a camera and an audience of thousands, or 2. One who wears it all the time. At least 2 is honest about who they are.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6243 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    Pendant alert: if I recall correctly, the headline in Jaquie Brown was itself an example of assonance, not alliteration.

    Alliteration uses repeated consonant, assonance relies on repeated vowel sounds.

    Nope, sorry. You're thinking of consonance vs. assonance. Alliteration includes both.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7473 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Barnes,

    There were gasps, apparently, from members of the audience, when the offending words were spoken and the offending orgasm faked.

    Nah, they were faking offence.
    If you ain't with em yer agin em!
    Faking organisms in the ordiance.
    That ain't alliteration that's just bad spelling.

    Peria • Since Dec 2006 • 5521 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    (And as we all know the correct technical definition of assonance is "getting the rhyme wrong").

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7473 posts Report Reply

  • Phil Lyth,

    Well to be really picky:

    Pendant alert

    The pedant dangled from the pendant


    from Phil who never makes mistakes

    Wellington • Since Apr 2009 • 458 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Ae, that would work well if an equal platform were provided for rebuttal. Hence our broadcasters have traditionally assumed extra responsibility for reasonable and non-demeaning behaviour in exchange for a license and the megaphone that comes with it. The loose campaign of complaint that got Henry's goat is one way of equalising that power.

    A key idea in media comment is to try and see the media as a citizen-consumer would. Media organisations sometimes serve people very poorly, and a complaints process is an important way of providing some balance.

    Unlike the Press Council and the Advertising Standards Authority, the BSA is a statutory body with statutory powers. That is to some degree an artifact of broadcasting's former scarcity, and its use of a public resource in the form of radio spectrum.

    We should be mindful of the implications of that power for media freedom. It's not a nice feeling being subject to a BSA complaint. But I genuinely think the BSA generally does a good job of applying and assessing the community standards for which it is responsible.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22825 posts Report Reply

  • 3410,

    Alliteration includes both.

    Well, there you go. Looks like Russell's and my high school english teachers may have both been taught by the same ignorant oaf.

    Auckland • Since Jan 2007 • 2618 posts Report Reply

  • Paul Litterick,

    Educated Tiso.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1000 posts Report Reply

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