A new Broadcast Standards Authority (BSA) member, Sean Plunket, is involved in controversy over a tweet he sent out on Wednesday afternoon.

Plunket seemed to imply in his tweet that he felt for Harvey Weinstein, the Hollywood producer currently involved in a scandal involving many women coming out claiming he's sexually harassed them.

Plunket, who's officially been in his new Government-appointed job less than two weeks, tweeted: "Anyone else feeling for Harvey Weinstein?".

The tweet quickly received a number of replies, including from several Kiwis outraged that the director of the BSA would either defend Weinstein or "troll" social media users by pretending to defend him.


Plunket said he sent the tweet out as a "social experiment" and was "fishing" to show how Twitter has become "an echo chamber for the perennially outraged."

He told the Herald: "I feel revulsion and disappointment towards Harvey Weinstein, but as is with so often the case with Twitter, those seeking to be outraged leapt to attack anyone who doesn't comply with their group think."

The Ministry for Women replied to Plunket with a tweet featuring a gif of the Muppets character Miss Piggy shaking her head and saying "no". However, they were quick to delete it and then apologised for their criticism, saying: "Apologies @SeanPlunket, we didn't intend any offence in our tweet (now deleted)."

Their decision to delete then drew criticism by other Twitter users.