In a victory for fair reporting, the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) has found that the ABC breached the accuracy rules of its Code of Practice when reporting on VicForests harvesting activities.
In this instance, the ACMA investigation found that the ABC had misrepresented a statement by the Conservation Regulator (OCR), therefore “exaggerated the impact and seriousness of the breaches found by the OCR. This could have raised considerable concerns for the ABC’s audiences about such a critical issue as water quality.”
“The media needs to be fair and impartial in their reporting, rather than telling a story that suits their narrative. Today is proof that these standards need to be upheld to the highest standards, particularly when an issue is highly emotive and contentious,” said Deb Kerr, CEO of the Victorian Forest Products Association (VFPA).
“Victoria’s native forestry is an industry that is one of the most scrutinised, audited – and globally certified. Not everyone might like it, but that doesn’t give anyone the right to twist the facts until they become fiction,” Ms Kerr concluded.