Newstalk ZB host caught 'going Gilmore'

Disgraced MP Aaron Gilmore isn’t the only man of influence to be caught out treating bar staff poorly.

A Newstalk ZB radio host has been caught out in a Gilmore-esque situation in a Queenstown bar.

Farming Show host Jamie Mackay has had a Broadcasting Standards Authority complaint upheld against him for abusing his position and threatening bar staff with bad publicity.

The owner of The Waterfront Bar in Queenstown made a complaint to the BSA after Mr Mackay and companions were refused service due to intoxication.

The owner complained that Mr Mackay threatened the staff with bad publicity.

He then carried out the threat by relaying his version of events on air, saying it was “poor form” for him to be refused service.

The BSA says that while it is commonplace for radio hosts to tell personal anecdotes there was an undertone of revenge in this one.

“He abused his position as the host of a radio programme in order to publicly criticise an identifiable business to advance his own personal agenda,” the decision says.

The BSA says there was real potential for the broadcast to have a detrimental impact on the bar’s business and commercial interests, which was unfair.

However, it did not impose a penalty as it felt the decision would serve as a reminder to the broadcaster and the host to stick to broadcasting standards.

The Radio Network general manager of talk programming Dallas Gurney would not tell NBR ONLINE whether or not Mr Mackay had been reprimanded. 

"All I'm willing to say is this happened four months ago and it was dealt with at the time. I will say that Jamie has apologised to the bar and I believe that apology has been accepted.

"From our perspective that's the end of the matter," Mr Gurney says. 

vyoung@nbr.co.nz

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