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BCCSA dismisses Carte Blanche appeal

2012-10-05 13:21
Cape Town - Current affairs programme Carte Blanche has failed in its appeal of a ruling on a report it did on a power-saving device, the Broadcasting Complaints Commission of South Africa (BCCSA) said on Friday.

Deputy tribunal chairperson Henning Viljoen upheld a ruling made in April that the Electro Smart device was overwhelmingly portrayed as a "rip off and illegality" on the M-Net channel.

He said the tribunal had been correct in finding the show's producer had not made a serious attempt to balance opinions on the product.

The programme did, however, come off with a lighter sanction in its appeal.

It was reprimanded for its actions, rather than being ordered to air the BCCSA's findings.

Device's effectiveness called into question

The ruling in April came after Sprigg Investments laid complaints that the nature and effectiveness of the Electro Smart device had been called into question following the airing of the programme. Electro Smart is marketed as a power-saving device which controls geysers.

In the broadcast, Carte Blanche interviewed electrical technician Raoul Coetzee, who implied the device was a mere timer and a "rip-off".

Sprigg responded by saying its explanation of why the device was not a timer was not broadcast, and it had never had the opportunity to respond to the allegations.

An independent report by Sedick Arnold, an authority on the device, had also not been aired.

The programme erred in reporting on an SA Bureau of Standards report which approved a device "almost identical" to the Electro Smart.

The tribunal found that omitting certain information had prevented the public from making an objective decision on the device.

Carte Blanche airs on M-Net (DStv channel 101) on Sundays at 19:00.

Read more on:    bccsa  |  m-net  |  carte blanche  |  lawsuits  |  tv
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