Anti-gay marriage lobby accuses Australian TV show of breaking impartiality code

Australian Christian Lobby complains about Sunrise’s coverage of same-sex marriage campaign

Anti-gay marriage lobby accuses Australian TV show of breaking impartiality code
07 June 2012

Anti-gay marriage campaign group the Australian Christian Lobby has accused morning TV show Sunrise of breaking TV’s impartiality code by supporting a same-sex marriage campaign.

Sunrise on Australia’s Channel Seven covered the launch of Marie Claire’s I Do campaign this morning (Thursday 7 June) and showed a debate on the issue between gay rights activist Dr Kerryn Phelps and the Australian Christian Lobby (ACL)’s Jim Wallace.

The ACL released a statement saying they ‘challenged the ethics’ of Sunrise for ‘facilitating and promoting the same-sex marriage activist campaign “I Do”’.

‘Overt activism for news and current affairs programmes clearly conflicts with media ethics in the independence and impartiality they are supposed to reflect,’ said ACL managing director Jim Wallace.

The ACL has lodged a complaint with the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) claiming that Sunrise breached the Commercial TV Code of Practice, which requires news programs to ‘present news fairly and impartially’. ACMA usually takes around eight months to respond to a complaint.

‘I admit that we’re being a bit provocative in this, but there’s no attempt to intimidate the audience into one particular viewpoint,’ Channel Seven’s director of news and public affairs, Peter Meakin said to Sydney Morning Herald. ‘I think it’s less than desirable when people try to stifle debate on an important issue.’

Australian Marriage Equality national convener, Alex Greenwich, said: ‘It is the right of media outlets to editorialise for or against marriage equality as they see fit and the ACL should not be attempting to violate this right.’

Watch Sunrise’s coverage of Marie Claire’s I Do campaign here:

HAVE YOUR SAY

MORE TOP STORIES

No thumbnail available

Alan Cumming marries partner in New York

Bisexual actor Alan Cumming tied the knot with his partner in New York to celebrate the their 5th anniversary.
No thumbnail available

Randy Harrison hits New York stage in SILENCE! The Musical

Queer as Folk alum appearing in his sixth off-Broadway production
No thumbnail available

British MP fights against anti-gay abuse in football

John Leech MP will highlight a report pointing out the levels of homophobic abuse suffered by Brighton fans
No thumbnail available

Great Dane: Culture minister Uffe Elbæk on gay Olympics and marriage

We speak to the openly gay Danish sports and culture minister on gay competitors in the games, encouraging LGBT sports, marriage and his informal style
Lead plaintiff in gay marriage case behind landmark ruling pays emotional tribute to late husband
No thumbnail available

Ex Archbishop likens gay marriage to Nazi Germany

LGBT counter protest claims true agenda of right-wing Tory rally against same-sex marriage is linked to gay 'cures'
No thumbnail available

Anti-gay hate forces closure of Jamaica gay homeless center

Jamaica's only drop-in center for homeless LGBT youth was closed due to anti-gay sentiments by local authorities and media
No thumbnail available

X Factor star: Anti-gay bullies followed me home from school

Gay Emmerdale soap actress and TOWIE star also share their experiences of being bullied in new film
Buddhist abbot Ajahn Brahm in Singapore: 'Unacceptable' that religion has been so cruel to LGBTIs

Buddhist abbot Ajahn Brahm in Singapore: 'Unacceptable' that religion has been so cruel to LGBTIs

Discrimination and LGBTI people suppressing their natural sexuality causes 'terrible harm' to LGBTIs and harms their community, says the well-known Theravada Buddhist monk and Spiritual Patron of the Buddhist Fellowship in Singapore
No thumbnail available

Oxford English Dictionary considers including gender-neutral honorific

Mx is already used by government departments, councils and universities throughout the UK