Opinion or Hate Mongering?

Further to my post on the atrocious piece by Miranda Devine and the Reason I Unsubscribed from the Sydney Morning Herald, the folks over at ABC TV's Media Watch weighed into the debate asking whether this type of article is opinion or hate mongering. 

I noticed a number of comments on Twitter as the program aired. But the video is now available on the ABC TV website, so you can see the segment for yourself here.

The article itself, the illustration used in the original piece and the editorial decision to place the article on the front page of the Sydney Morning Herald website were discussed. Note that the image in question has now been removed from the website. Calling out the noted "hanging from lamp-posts" quote, Jonathan Holmes suggests:

That's not opinion-writing, Miranda. That's hate-mongering.
You and your paper, which saw fit to blazon your ugly piece across the front page of its website, should both be ashamed of yourselves.

Now, if only the ABC would allow their media player to be embeddable … 

3 thoughts on “Opinion or Hate Mongering?

  1. I don’t think either Miranda Devine or the Sydney Morning Herald actually believe what she writes a lot of the time: her job is to be a contrarian, to rile up the left, occasionally offer an unexpected point of view, and – most importantly – to get lots of clicks.
    There are a couple of problems with this, though. First is that not everyone “gets” that that’s why she exists – some people take her seriously, and use her articles to flame their own hatred. The other problem is that writing crap to increase your click through rate is bad, irresponsible journalism – even as virtually all our media does it.
    As such, cancelling your subscription to – or just not going to the websites of – newspapers that prey on idiocy and prejudice to bump up their traffic is a great way to not reward them for these practices.

  2. Absolutely agree, Rachel. I totally get the whole contrarian angle. A good position will always generate conversation around it … but there is a short term end game in that.
    No wonder there is increasing audience share for independent media.

  3. Whether Miranda Devine believes what she writes is irrelevant – I happen to believe she does.
    The fact is that subs & editors are there to stop this kind of hate-filled rhetoric & fallacy entering into the public domain. The problem being when it does, that half of society end up believing it. Not because they are stupid necessarily (although statistically there would be a few), but due to a numbness of intellect bought on by a constant barrage of information & marketing & opinion. Some folks choose a publication they trust (in Sydney = SMH or Tele) then soaks in what that outlet reports & has to say (this is also true of talkback radio).
    In my book the editors need to cop the flack for letting this one by – as Miranda most likely does not care.

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