In January 2011, TVNZ reported a 10-year-old Canadian girl had discovered a supernova 240 light years away. Don McDonald pointed out a supernova that close to Earth would barbeque us…and in fact it was 240 million light years away. TVNZ admitted the error, but refused to uphold the complaint.
[According to Standard 5 of the Free-to-Air Television Code of Broadcasting Practice, a broadcast news story should be accurate in relation to all material points of fact, but only "reasonable efforts" are needed for achieve that accuracy.]
Should we expect journalists to "get it right" every time?
PS: 02 May 2012 - McDonald has his fine dismissed.