Media rally in support of NBR’s EY award stance

Business journalists follow NBR's lead and withdraw from the awards

NBR’s decision to withdraw from the EY business journalism awards has garnered support from other journalists and media organisations.

This morning, NBR withdrew from the awards after learning that Karen Scherer's entry covering an accounting scandal at EY client Fuji Xerox, had been disqualified by EY and the independent judge, Rebecca Macfie, had resigned in protest.

This afternoon, a raft of rivals have rallied behind our stance.

Stuff publisher Fairfax NZ was one of those who pulled out.

"We sought assurances from EY but nothing has been forthcoming, which is why we have decided to withdraw our entries," Fairfax national business editor Ellen Read said.

"We applaud all efforts to support great journalism but, just as we report independently, we need to know that any awards we are associated with are free from bias and we have not been able to determine that."

The New Zealand Herald said it had also decided to withdraw its entries from the awards.

"It is important that journalism awards are independent and the removal of Karyn Scherer's entry without adequate explanation calls into question the process at this year's EY's awards. The situation is regrettable but the New Zealand Herald feels it has little choice but to withdraw its own journalists' entries," Herald business editor Hamish Fletcher said.

Former Sunday Star-Times business columnist Rod Oram told NBR he had also decided to withdraw his entry, and RNZ senior journalist Anusha Bradley tweeted that she had decided to withdraw (and the other RNZ journalists who entered have followed suit).

“I was a finalist but, after talking with Rebecca Macfie, I’ve withdrawn my entry in the EY Business Journalism Awards,” Ms Bradley said.

Ms Macfie was a judge for the awards but resigned because an entry from NBR’s Karyn Scherer, covering an accounting scandal at EY client Fuji Xerox, was disqualified.

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