So when does a freelance tech journo's point of view on politics matter. #mediawatch

It matters when an obvious right wing twitter user decides he can act like a 3 year old and tell tales.  ( Media Watch 30/9/2010)

What then irritates me even more is when Media Watch and Fairfax take what is obviously a political agenda and run with it.  Like vexatious litigants taking up our time, this complaint falls into this category.

I fail to see how a person that doesn’t interview politicians, has nothing to do with them or their reporting cannot express a political view.  Perhaps the language was not the best, but the sentiment was well agreed with by those with similar political views.

Yet for some reason the label of “Journalist” means that the person is no longer entitled to a political view no matter where within an organisation or even external to that organisation.

More so, if anyone who is any Journalist now makes any comment even when obviously not on the job (at 11pm) expresses any political view on Twitter a precedent has been established to rake them over the coals.

Gloating about telling tales is plain childish, certainly doesn’t further any arguments about the reasoning behind what was nothing more than a blatant biased political attack.  If Julia Gillard had been called bad names, would he have complained.  I doubt it. ( e.g saying  Paul Howl is talking shit )

Why also did Media Watch deem this newsworthy is also questionable.  700 followers and an account which clearly stated Freelance Tech Journalist making political statements is not that big a story is it?

The fallout from Media Watch will be for at least a while people will keep a little quieter.  Managers will look at the noise that was generated and tighten the noose a little more. And a few people will just go underground, well at least until they are found out again.

A vexatious complainant with an obvious political agenda gets to wield influence that could have cost someone a sizeable chunk of their income ( I presume). Yes the language was a bit harsh, and yes on reflection he shouldn’t have said what he did, but remove one or two harsh words and you are left with the tone.  The tone is now what is endangered not only from Journalists, but all those that work in any corporation that is worried about its public image.

The lines between public and private are blurring, but that does not mean that only your employer is how you are defined, nor should it.

6 Responses to “So when does a freelance tech journo's point of view on politics matter. #mediawatch”

  1. I just put the following comment up on the Media Watch site:

    This does seem a bit over the top. I love Mediawatch, but surely this is blurring the lines a bit? Very many things are said on twitter in a torrent of one liners, and there are a multitude of journalists, politicians, political commentators and de-facto journalists saying all kinds of things. Turner commented on Abbott being nauseatingly smug and I believe he was. I thought so at the time. The choice of language was unnecessary, but not that unusual.
    As for Hutchison, are you suggesting that either of the quoted comments is not true?
    If Mediawatch is to include social media in its range of subject matter, then surely the recent rantings of John Groves, State President of One Nation Victoria ( is more worthy of coverage?
    For that matter, what about the gloating of the conservative social commentator who claims to have reported Turner to Media Watch? ( Media Watch rightfully champions the cause of checking sources. Did you check Candelori’s form?

  2. and Candelori just twittered this link:

    I’ve got my own hate piece:

  3. In meat space, your social network is about trust and reputation. If I find out that you are not honest in your descriptions, if you tend to gild the lilly, then i will think less of you. In short, in real life, In your personal and professional life you are the same person; honest and therefore trust worthy, or not.

    The difference between meat space and cyber space is that in the later, your words are permanent, enabling us to compare what Turner actually said, how he described something against what actually happened.

    ADAM TURNER: this a—hole is trying to make a victory speech, complete with cheersquad…

    TONY ABBOTT: There should be no premature triumphalism tonight.

  4. I posted this comment on another article, but it relates quite well to what wolfcat has written:

    The funny part in all this is that people think journalists shouldn’t suffer the exact same scrutiny they apply to politicians and others.

    And whilst Mr Turner is not a member of the Canberra press gallery, the reality is that leading up to the election he had things to say in regards to the National Broadband Network and the proposed mandatory ISP filter. All fine. His final pre-election analysis on which of the major parties should get the gong basically concluded that whilst Labor sought to filter the internet, their policy was more tolerable than no NBN at all under the Coalition. No problem with that, he is entitled to hold that opinion.

    But when you start calling politicians c**k-suckers and a-holes, you bring the journalism profession into disrepute. This wasn’t a “private” comment as some have tried to argue, it was a public comment on one of the world’s most prominent social networks. And given his previous policy analysis in the Age and SMH online sections, makes his comments all the more relevant when it comes to holding him to account.

    I stand by everything I have said and done. I don’t seek to run away from any of it.

  5. an other good post on this can be found here

Discussion Area - Leave a Comment