'Planet Key' songwriter prepared to contest ban in court

A song which takes aim at the National Government has been blocked from television and radio and the Electoral Commission says it will take its creator to court if he doesn't remove the song from iTunes.

Concerned with what he calls "the manufactured nature of politics", Darren Watson wrote 'Planet Key' and was then encouraged by his partner to release it.

The song's popularity has been boosted by a satirical video. The video's animator says his creation is a world away from controversial videos - such as the one showing a burning effigy of John Key - that have made headlines recently.

"I made a point of keeping it pretty happy, no hate in there, and Darren and I both talked about that - making it enjoyable," animator Jeremy Jones says.

However, the Electoral Commission sees the song and its video differently, saying that playing them on television or radio is a breach of the Broadcasting Act. They have also said the song and video can't be sold on iTunes unless they are labelled as an election advertisement.

However, Otago University's Professor Andrew Geddis says the Electoral Commission "might've got this one wrong".

"In order to be an electoral advertisement it has to be an advertisement. And in the ordinary English language I don't think you'd regard a song released by a professional songwriter as an advertisement," he says.

Mr Watson says the ruling has highlighted a "huge inconsistency" as many songs are politically charged. He says he is prepared to contest the decision in court to ensure songs such as his are treated fairly.

A music video taking aim at the National Government has been blocked from airplay on radio and TV. Source: 1 NEWS


Rail crossing rulebreakers ticketed

Officers have been cracking down on those who flout the law as part of rail safety week. Source: 1 NEWS


Rallies across NZ condemn Israeli attacks on Gaza

Pro-Palestinian protesters have marched through Auckland, Christchurch and Wellington today, urging the Government to strongly oppose Israel's attacks on Gaza.

The protesters picketed outside the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade and the Israeli Embassy. The Palestine Solidarity Network say they are protesting what they believe is the genocide of Palestinian people.

Joel Cosgrove is on the Palestine Solidarity Committee and says the Government is currently not doing enough to support Gaza.

"The Israeli Government is not a group of naughty boys, so calling the ambassador to tell them off or ask some questions actually isn't enough," he says.

"These are people killing thousands of Palestinians consciously."

Yesterday, six pro-Palestinian protesters entered the New Zealand Superannuation Fund building in Auckland where they chained themselves to an office.

They called for the company to pull out their investments from companies which make bombs which are used by Israel. All six were given a warning by police.

"Free Palestine" march towards the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Source: 1 NEWS