Wednesday, May 30, 2012

The Australian’s shame over death threat emails

It just goes on and on — an editorial today in The Australian demands: “Correct your errors, Mr Holmes.”

On May 24, the ABC website finally admitted what was reported on The Australian’s front page on May 3 — that emails at the centre of the original story “were found by the Privacy Commissioner to contain abuse, but not overt threats.”

As correctly pointed out by Holmes over a week ago, the emails in question were not “at the centre of the original story” at all; rather, they were garnered from a period a year or more after the incidents which prompted the relocation of ANU staff.

At any rate, one wonders whether The Australian considers it at all significant that ANU people were still evidently receiving abusive emails a year or more after having to be relocated due to threatening incidents.

The Australian, Mr Holmes claimed, “looks worst of all” among the media organisations involved — for enlightening readers with accurate reports that included the full facts about a significant story.

So then, what’s “accurate” about ascribing centrality to a bunch of emails that isn’t warranted by the plain facts. And then headlining that death threat emails had been “debunked”, when there’s been ample credible material published to warrant real concern.

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