42 sleeps. Cue vitriol

There’s a sure sign for us in the media that this ACT election is on and going to be close. The level of listener/reader/viewer vitriol has ratcheted up ten-fold.
I first noticed it about ten days ago. Suddenly the texts I receive every morning at 666 breakfast started to look feisty. Then the e-mails started. The kindest ones simply called for my sacking. They all contained, on average, about five spelling mistakes.
Then this week it picked up even more. The texts came flying in as soon as I started interviewing a politician. Some, anonymous of course, took to twitter to give me a spray and question my parentage. And, of course, call for my sacking. And still the emails came.
I draw two conclusions from the events of the past 10 days. Either these listeners totally misunderstand the role of the media and the interviewer in particular. Or, more worryingly, these attacks have a sinister motive – to cower the media into backing off on a story or to stop asking the questions most members of the public expect.
I have some bad news for those who think they can influence the media. Noel Towell from The Canberra Times is a crazy Irishman who knows no fear and thrives on adversity. Mark Parton at 2CC is a former Western Australian, and like fellow West Aussies Gina Rinehart and Andrew Forrest, has a hide like a rhinoceros. ABC TV’s Anna Morozow is one of the territory’s most thorough and respected journalists. I can’t say for sure that these three have been receiving the same public responses, but given they’ve all reported the same issues I have it’s a fair bet.
And as for me? Well I’m not the sharpest tool in the shed, and as such it takes a while for these campaigns to sink in. So by all means keep it coming. But as of Friday, my boss told me there are no plans afoot to sack me.
Sorry to disappoint.



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