2 Apr 2015

Ruling against Planet Key ban

7:42 pm on 2 April 2015

The High Court has found against the Electoral Commission and its decision to ban public broadcasts of the satirical song 'Planet Key'.

A screenshot of Darren Watson's Planet Key video

A screenshot of the Planet Key video Photo: DARREN WATSON

The commission decided the song and its video were an election programme and advertisement under the terms of the Electoral Act and the Broadcasting Act.

But, in a 76-page judgement, Justice Denis Clifford found in favour of the songwriter, Darren Watson, and Jeremy Jones, who made the video.

Both had sought a declaratory judgement on the commission's decision.

Justice Clifford found the decision would impose limits on the right of freedom of expression of the plaintiffs and other New Zealanders, which was unjustified in a free and democratic society.

In a statement, Mr Watson and Mr Jones said they were delighted with the judgement, which vindicated their sense of grievance over the commission's decision.

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