New Zealand media have agreed on protocols for reporting the trial of the man accused of the Christchurch mosque shootings.
While major news outlets have agreed to "comprehensively and responsibly" report the case, this will include limits on promoting white supremacy ideology.
This would extend to the contents of a manifesto shared on the internet by the accused gunman before the March 15 shootings.
The gunman, 28, faces 50 murder charges and 39 counts of attempted murder.
The following protocols have been agreed to by NZME (publisher of the Herald), RNZ, TVNZ, MediaWorks and Stuff, for the coverage and reportage of the trial:
• We shall, to the extent that is compatible with the principles of open justice, limit
any coverage of statements, that actively champion white supremacist or terrorist
• For the avoidance of doubt the commitment set out at [above] shall include the accused's manifesto document "The Great Replacement".
• We will not broadcast or report on any message, imagery, symbols or signals
(including hand signals) made by the accused or his associates promoting or
supporting white supremacist ideology.
• Where the inclusion of such signals in any images is unavoidable, the relevant parts
of the image shall be pixellated.
• To the greatest extent possible, the journalists that are selected by each of the
outlets to cover the trial will be experienced personnel.
• These guidelines may be varied at any time, subject to a variation signed by all
• This Protocol shall continue in force indefinitely.
"We are also mindful of our role as the "eyes and ears of the public" in the context of court reporting. In this instance, we acknowledge the particular importance of this function, given the many victims' friends and families outside New Zealand who may otherwise be unable to engage in the trial process," the NZ Media Freedom Committee said in a statement.
"We are aware that the accused may attempt to use the trial as a platform to amplify white supremacist and/or terrorist views or ideology."