BAI upholds three complaints against TV3 programmes

Thursday 28 February 2013 17.32
Three complaints against separate TV3 programmes broadcast last year were upheld
Three complaints against separate TV3 programmes broadcast last year were upheld

The Broadcasting Authority of Ireland has upheld three complaints against TV3 programmes.

It found that a discussion on abortion on Ireland AM in August 2012 was not balanced.

It also found that a Tonight With Vincent Browne programme in October 2012 included remarks against Israel which were not balanced by other contributions.

The BAI concluded that the Pyschic Readings live programme in October 2012 had breached guidelines by discussing health issues.

The BAI rejected two complaints, which related to Psychic Readings Live, and upheld five complaints in part, relating to Psychic Readings Live and Tonight with Vincent Browne.

With regards to the station's Ireland AM programme broadcast on 22 August 2012, the authority found it had not been balanced.

It said the presenters had failed to adequately challenge or investigate the views of a guest who was making a pro-choice argument.

TV3 had said the programme was balanced by another in which pro-life views were expressed by another guest.

However, the BAI found that as the other programme was broadcast in October, the two could not be considered to be linked.

The BAI also upheld a complaint against the Tonight with Vincent Browne programme, which was broadcast on 23 October 2012.

The BAI found that the presenter said that Israel was a cancer in foreign affairs and that he said "[with the creation of Israel the Jews] 'stole the land from the Arabs'."

The BAI's Compliance Committee found that the references made by the presenter to the state of Israel were included without any apparent context or relevance to the discussion of the then forthcoming US presidential election, which was the focus of the programme.

The committee added that it was its view that the remarks constituted an editorial statement by the presenter that was not balanced by contributions from the programme guests.

The item was deemed to have "failed to meet the requirement for fair, objective and impartial treatment of news and current affairs".

However, it rejected a complaint that Mr Browne's remarks were anti-Semitic.

It said: "It was the committee's view that this element of the complaint was not substantiated by the programme content and that there was nothing to indicate that the remarks made were of this nature."

The BAI also upheld a complaint against TV3's Psychic Readings live programme broadcast on 29 October 2012.

The complainant said the programme breached guidelines by discussing a health issue when a host told a caller who had called and asked about her friend who is currently suffering from cancer.

The host was quoted as saying: "I am not a doctor, but I see no complications with your friend. It will be good in the next two months. I see victory in the future. There will be no tragedy here".

The BAI found that broadcast was contrary to the requirements of section 8.10.4 of the BAI General Commercial Communications Code, which prohibits the inclusion in commercial communications for psychic services of any references to health matters.

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