NZ Herald

Why does the media tend to overstate the size of a protest?

If 5 people turn up, say so.  If there are 50 there, say so.  But why turn a few dozen into “hundreds” and a few hundred into “thousands”?

Why is it that newspapers and TV are generally assisting the protesters in making it appear as if the protest is much more successful than it was?

One of the Whaleoil Ground Crew reports in

In this NZ Herald article, titled “Thousands protest TPPA in downtown Auckland”, the body of the text reports starts with “Several thousand protesters converged on downtown Auckland this afternoon to protest the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement.”

Then two paragraphs later states, “Crowd estimates from local organisers were: 1,000 in Auckland, 400 in Wellington, 200 in Hamilton and Nelson, 125 in Whangarei, 100 each in Tauranga, Napier, Christchurch and Dunedin, 80 in Palmerston North and New Plymouth, and 30 in Invercargill.”

So the organisers themselves say that there were only a 1000, not “Thousands” as the Herald claims.

But what is more, I was in one of the apartments on the corner of Queen and Customs street.

The protesters came down Queen street and turned right on Customs street.

There they stopped a way down and I took three photos of the whole protest gathered where they stopped.   Read more »

What me? Worried about the Press Council? Nup

People have written to me, and plenty of other have written blog posts and tweets suggesting that I would get hammered by the Press Council for my posts.

I’m not so sure.

Have a read of this complaint against the NZ Herald and Bob Jones after his column on women drivers:

1. There are two complaints, by Wendy Allison and Brendon Blue, about a Bob Jones column published in the New Zealand Herald on 22 October 2013, ‘Spare us from road-clogging women’. The complaints are not upheld.

2. In his column Bob Jones claimed that ‘terrified’ women drivers were stopping at roundabouts and causing ‘massive pile-ups’ and delays. They were also blocking the free flow of traffic by persistently driving in the right-hand lane.
3. As for people who complained about him weaving around the women drivers, he said he had suggested to police that they would be ‘doing God’s work by going to the complainants’ homes, beating the crap out of them and burning their houses down’.

4. Ms Allison said the column contributed to a culture in New Zealand of sexism and misogynist violence. It incited violence against women and amounted to hate speech.
5. The attitudes expressed by Jones were common in New Zealand; they were damaging and contributed to discrimination against women. As such as they were in breach of the Press Council’s principle dealing with discrimination.
6. She says the media has a role in influencing cultural attitudes, but the Herald was condoning this negative culture by publishing the column.
7. Mr Blue complained that the column was misleading, discriminatory, perpetuated negative and inaccurate stereotypes. As such, it breached Press Council principles dealing with fairness, accuracy and balance and discrimination.
8. Its representation of women drivers was inaccurate because data suggests that women may be superior drivers. He accepted that the column represented Sir Robert’s opinion, but this did not allow him to mislead readers by omitting information that contradicted his view – namely official accident statistics which Mr Blue supplied to the Press Council.
9. He said the column explicitly and wilfully condoned violence against women and appeared threatening, abusive and insulting. Like Ms Allison he said the column bordered on hate speech.
10. Mr Blue sought an apology from the Herald for publishing the column and asked the newspaper to review Sir Robert’s continued employment as a columnist.   Read more »

Wasps? Bees? Oh who cares they are both yellow and black

The Herald really out did itself yesterday.

They had a story about a wasp attack, headlined about bees, and capped it all off with stock photo of bees.

bees-wasps Read more »


It isn’t going away Len, poll says naff off Noddy

Len Brown thinks that his problems have gone away and that in his mind most Aucklanders want him to carry on in the job.

The NZ Herald/Digipoll busts that little misconception this morning.

Bernard Orsman delivers the bad news to Len Brown.

Len Brown will find it tough to be re-elected Mayor of Auckland, according to a new Herald-DigiPoll survey.

Only 22.7 per cent of the people questioned in this month’s poll said they would vote for Mr Brown in the 2016 elections; 57.7 per cent said they would not. The other 20 per cent said they did not know or did not vote in local body elections.

The poll suggests women and the elderly were particularly upset by revelations about his extramarital affair and undeclared hotel stays.  Read more »

Simon Collins Pimps More Special Interests

Simon Collins has been the subject of prior examination by this blog in his pimping stories of the poor.  Those framed as victims in these stories are actually investigated with a simple google search by Whaleoil and never seem to stack up.  The WOBH blog will always call him on this until he gets his facts right and behaves as a journalist trained and skilled should.

In today’s expose a group of Maori wish to set up a Maori Innovation Fund.  Good on them if they fund it with Treaty settlements and risk their own cash for Maori to succeed.

Collins though gets right into his own political agenda

Eight Maori tribes have come together to set up a venture capital fund of $50 million to $70 million aimed at lifting Maori out of their long post-colonial status as the nation’s labourers.

Say what?

According to the article “$26 billion of wealth is owned by individual Maori employers and self-employed people”.  Immigrants, Asian and Pacific Islanders have long taken over as New Zealand’s labourers.

Maori are not as pathetic as Collins has framed them to be.  Indeed middle class Maori (MCM’s) now even join the National Party and stand as candidates in safe general seats.   Read more »

Home Ownership Stat Porn Drives Herald To Nonsense

New Zealanders are obsessed with the myth of security equalling owning their own home.  Tell that to people who have seen in their lifetime negative equity, tell that to the people in Christchurch.

This myth is so common now that newspapers are pimping absolutely useless statistics to drive FOMO (young people slang for – fear of missing out).  This FOMO is welcomed by the Granny’s largest advertisers – real estate agents.

Apparently the majority of New Zealanders now do not own their own home.  Shock horror, the sky is caving in.

But let us look at the statistics being peddled.  Anne Gibson is an experienced, trained and skilled journalist and really should never allow this to happen:

“In 2013, 49.8 per cent of people aged 15 years and over owned or partly owned the home they lived in, compared with 53.2 per cent in 2006,” said Census general manager Gareth Meec.

Really?  Read more »

Did David Cunliffe wet his pants?

Via the tipline

For your amusement I have attached a photo from page A3 from the NZ Herald Press display edition. I would swear DC has wet himself!!



I can’t help but think a cheeky Herald employee made the wet spot just a little more obvious!


Labour poll-axed in Digipoll

in big twubble

The latest Herald/Digipoll is out and the reading isn’t at all good for David Cunliffe or for Labour.

Labour has a two in the front of their number.

Labour’s support has sunk nearly six points and it is polling only 29.5 per cent in the Herald-DigiPoll survey.

The popularity of leader David Cunliffe has fallen by almost the same amount, to 11.1 per cent. That is worse than the 12.4 per cent worst rating of former leader David Shearer.

National could govern alone with 50.8 per cent if the poll were translated to an election result.

The popularity of John Key as Prime Minister has climbed by 4.6 points to 66.5 per cent.  Read more »

This mate is not for turning

The NZ Herald has gone all in on Judith Collins, deploying everyone to write articles about how terrible it is to support exporters, have a dinner and a glass of milk.

John Armstrong has this headline:


WONKY HEADLINE: John Armstrong shows he knows nothing of caucs sentiment

Well I have news for the tragics of the press gallery…this issue has done nothing of the sort….certainly not from this mate.

Mates don’t go septic with their mates because the media have a bunch in their panties. If anything this has strengthened the resolve of Judith Collins and her political mates.

The more they go on and the more they attempt to ‘get’ her the stronger she becomes. They have now unwittingly given her a massive name recognition boost, successfully shown themselves and the opposition to be hypocrites and bullies, and at the same time managed to soften Judith Collins image and show her as human and not an automaton.

Far more column inches have now been written about a dinner and a glass of milk and words that the minister neither wrote nor approved than any other political story in recent months or even years.

The talk of a leadership war between Steven joyce and Judith Collins is merely wishful thinking on the part of gallery journalists who usually sit in the gallery waiting for a messenger from which ever minister’s flunky or opposition spokesman is wanting a story or lines run.  Read more »

Herald busted manufacturing immigration story

This morning the NZ Herald ran a story by Jared Savage.

Investigations by WOBH can reveal that the Herald has sat on this story since October 2013.

A wealthy Auckland businessman was given New Zealand citizenship against official advice after a Government minister lobbied the colleague who made the decision.

Maurice Williamson, the Minister of Building and Construction, and Prime Minister John Key then opened the first stage of a $70 million construction project launched by the Chinese-born developer after he became a citizen.

The following year, one of his companies made a $22,000 donation to the National Party.

The Department of Internal Affairs (DIA) recommended that the citizenship application of Donghua Liu be declined on the grounds that he did not spend enough time in New Zealand or meet English language criteria.

At first blush this looks bad, but is it?

Well not really. Some pertinent facts have been left out from the story.

For a start there is nothing wrong with the Minister of Immigration or Internal Affairs exercising discretion – it is their right to do so is and it is written into the legislation. Members of Parliament advocate for that discretion to be used constantly, and in some famous cases like Taito Phillip Field used as a matter of course by Labour’s immigration ministers.

But in order to obtain citizenship you must first have permanent residency, which is a much harder barrier to overcome. Read more »