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In defence of Alan Jones

Broadcaster Alan Jones addresses the media in Sydney on Sunday after it is revealed he told guests at a Sydney University Liberal Club dinner Julia Gillard’s father had “died of shame” over his daughter’s “lies”. AAP Image/Warren Clarke

So, Sydney shock-jock Alan Jones has disgraced himself with his appallingly tasteless and hurtful comment, recorded at a recent Sydney University Liberal club dinner, that the late John Gillard “died of shame” over his daughter Julia. He compounded the ignominy with his bizarre 45 minute “apology” on Sunday. His comments have led to an explosion of justified schadenfreude by the many people who lament his shtick, a tiresome combination of hate, misogyny and misinformation. Politicians, media figures, and thousands and thousands of “ordinary folk” on social media have expressed outrage at his comments. Numerous ALP figures have finally decided that they will no longer indulge him with appearances on his show.

A prominent manifestation of this outrage is an online petition, calling for Radio 2GB to sack Alan Jones, which has attracted over 100,000 signatures. It and similar campaigns have convinced many companies to remove their sponsorship from Jones’ program. Of course, the advocates of these campaigns have every right to run them: they, like Jones, have a right of free speech. But while I am no fan of Jones’ nasty oeuvre, I am not sure that these campaigns are positive developments for discourse in Australia.

Let us put these campaigns into perspective. 100,000 + signatures does not equal Jones’ reported audience. And it takes a lot more effort to listen to his show than it does to sign an online petition or like a facebook page. Sure, many sponsors have pulled advertising. But they may have simply moved them to 2GB’s other shows, which include the equally charming Ray Hadley. Some sponsors have announced they are “suspending” advertising, perhaps signalling a return to the fray once the controversy dies down. Finally, Jones is an equity holder at 2GB, so the chances of it sacking him are minimal to nil.

But what if the campaign succeeds? Are we really getting to a stage where a default reaction to an outrageous comment is that “something must be done”, in particular a person should be shut down and taken off the air? Are the campaigners really saying that Alan Jones’ show, which they do not listen to, simply should not exist?

What about the wishes of Alan Jones’ listeners and their tastes? Wouldn’t a better strategy be to use his outrageous comments to convince his listeners that they should stop listening? Would it not be better to try to diminish their number with the power of argument, rather than to seek to deprive them of “their” guy because “we” don’t like his message? What if “they” did the same thing? One can’t be sure that one will always be on the “socially acceptable” side of the barricades in the likely free speech battles that Jones’ removal might prompt.

Jones’ power is over-exaggerated. He has a large audience, but it covers a relatively narrow demographic. It would be a more ignominious fate for Jones to continue his slide in the ratings into ludicrous irrelevance, shouting into the void, rather than to be made a martyr by being “hounded” off the air while his ratings remain high. Let him self-destruct, like Glenn Beck in the US.

And while one can bemoan the lack of diversity in Australia’s newspaper market, the same is not true of radio. Melbourne in particular has thriving community radio stations. Alan Jones’ ilk clearly doesn’t impress Melbournians, with shock-jock stable MTR dying a ratings death earlier this year. For whatever reason, some Sydneysiders are impressed with that stuff. The removal of Jones due to campaigns by his ideological opponents wouldn’t, I expect, reduce that apparent appetite for shock jocks. And the digital revolution means that the scarcity of the broadcast spectrum is no longer an issue: Jones’ use of airwaves doesn’t crowd out a more worthy participant.

One is of course free to boycott Jones’ remaining advertisers, though I am doubtful that a large percentage of those who have signed the petition will do so. The campaign against the sponsors does however raise interesting issues, as noted obliquely by Todd Sampson on the Gruen Transfer on Wednesday night. Do we want to entrench the idea that private companies are the guardians of what is and what is not allowable speech? I wrote about this in a previous post in regard to social media companies. And certainly, MacQuarie Radio is a private company that owns 2GB and has the power to sack Jones, just as Fairfax Media’s 3AW has recently sacked Derryn Hinch. But do we want that power extended to companies like Freedom Furniture and Hyundai, who have both dropped the Jones program and who can be expected to have zero expertise in the “acceptable speech” arena?

Maybe this concern is naïve. Advertisers already exercise enormous power over broadcast speech. The Jones campaigns may be a positive development in at least injecting an overlay of citizen input, particularly via social media, into the exercise of that power. However, corporate advertising power over speech, in my view, is something that should be discouraged. Rather than encouraging and therefore legitimising the practice, social media is probably better used to call out corporations when they use their advertising power to censor.

Join the conversation

214 Comments sorted by

    1. Sarah Joseph
      Sarah Joseph is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Director, Castan Centre for Human Rights Law at Monash University

      In reply to Chris Murphy

      His supporter base has reduced significantly in the last few years. His older listeners are not being supplemented by new ones, and certainly not younger ones. Many of them will have been disgusted by his comment. So I think you overemphasise his "power". And I think it is simplistic for you to assume that all Jones listeners are the same.

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    2. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Sarah Joseph

      The Gillard response was calculated to appeal to the demographic by inducing a protective response in the men and a sympathetic sense that Jones "went too far" or was not "decent" to attack her dead father.

      It is also the diminishing size of the audience that makes her able to risk losing some of them altogether.

      Her key demographic is professional women and the men they marry and she is working it as hard as she can. OAPs and suburban strugglers aren't her forte.

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    3. Aaron Night

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Sarah Joseph

      It is not about the SIZE of his listenership (but to be fair, it is one of the biggest radio audiences still) it is the level of engagement they have with him. Amanda and Jonesy may have a bigger audience - but they don't have a show based on political and social ideology, and if only 300 of their 500,000 listeners take everything they say as gospel truth, while 290,000 of Jones' 300,000 listeners do, then Jones is more "powerful" in those terms. Which is again the basis of the power of him to advertisers. It is about "cut through" of persuasion. That's what matters to advertising. Radio is a media that exists ENTIRELY on advertising dollars.

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    4. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Sarah Joseph

      Yes, it was the perfect response politically. It allowed her minders to whip up the public outrage while she stood clear as "a woman wronged". What decent man wouldn't want to be protective?

      The thing is, she's a hard-case ex-union lawyer, not a delicate little flower. The whole thing rings hollow.

      I'm already on the record elsewhere as advocating a more robust response, overtly taking the high moral ground by accepting the apology and then using the platform it provided to give leadership on the ethical issue. This misusing of people's finer feelings for political spin is distasteful in the extreme.

      I'm not a professional ethicist, but I'm quite unable to see how such behaviour is ethical in the leader of a democratic nation.

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    5. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Sarah Joseph

      It's hard to make an apology if the person you wronged won't speak to you. Nonetheless, Jones made a pretty complete and unconditional apology to which she could have responded.

      I think Gillard has allowed the outrage to run. She could have lead the discussion in more productive ways but chose not to.

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    6. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Sarah Joseph

      I think that a suitable arrangement could have been made.

      You seem to be of the view that punishing Jones is the most important thing. I wonder if you'd care t unravel that a bit?

      Gillard is the PM and the leader, while Jones is just a sideshow. Why should she not simply rise above, as adults do with children and gentlemen do with ignorant boors and ladies do with aplomb? Why should she allow herself to be perceived as wounded by his childish comment? She's got nothing to prove to the likes of him.

      How does it serve the country she leads?

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    7. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Sarah Joseph

      Oh dear, Sarah. I urge you to read back over my comments and then come back and say sorry for misrepresenting me.

      A person of your background should be above that.

      My point is clear: the Jones stuff was vile, but Gillard is supposed to be the leader and could have handled it a lot better. I have speculated and given my reasons for speculating that she has done so for political reasons.

      I'm quite disappointed you don't seem to believe your own words above, to the effect that good ideas should be used to conquer bad ones. If you really believe my ideas are bad, it should be trivial for a person of your calibre to demolish them.

      I take exception to your final aspersion, as well. I have advocated that she should bury him with her argument, not "drag him out of the swamp".

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    8. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Sarah Joseph

      Apology accepted. I would also like to say thanks for the extensive answer.

      I'd like to talk more about it, but if you're not willing to, I won't put my questions.

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    9. Sue Ieraci

      Public hospital clinician

      In reply to Sarah Joseph

      It would be fascinating to see any specific research in this area - what exactly is the listener profile of the shock jock shows? (I'm sure the broadcasters have this information).

      If they are older people who have limited exposure to other views, it is possible that they will absorb and repeat the Jonesisms without challenge. Is this demographic going into attrition, or being renewed as baby boomers age?

      Any media academics out there?

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    10. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Sarah Joseph

      I understand entirely and appreciate the fact that you've engaged so extensively with your readers. It's through exploration of ideas that we reach understandings, not by ignoring each other.

      Thank you for helping me explore some interesting ideas.

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    11. Keith Thomas

      Retired

      In reply to Sarah Joseph

      Ms Gillard played it perfectly. In my view, Jones has been pushing his luck with Ms Gillard for a long time, hoping for a response that he can use to attract audience. Let's hold open the possibility that he was aiming to get the Prime Minister on the line during his program to apologize; that is, to use her as just another prop for his show. I think, Ms Joseph, you have the balance just about right. Ms Gillard too, providing she refuses to play any further part in his attention-getting antics. She has a few more important things on her plate.

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    12. William Bruce

      Artist

      In reply to Chris Murphy

      Chris "The Oracle" Says re AJ listeners "....Reason itself is a left-wing concept to them. We are not dealing with educated people here....."

      It's good to know "The thought police"...always know better....

      No wonder the 9/10ths of the World is so f*cked up!

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  1. account deleted

    logged in via email @gmail.com

    Sarah, yes, we have reached the abysmal point in this country that some people believe that those who they disagree with should be silenced. It's particularly prevalent among the "progressive" (socialist/feminist) politically.

    It's a natural outgrowth of the social-constructional idea: if it's OK to do "research" that is essentially advocacy, then of course it's OK to try to shut any opposing views down.

    It will end in tears.

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    1. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Aaron Night

      Interesting idea, Aaron and somewhat true, I suspect. However, I disagree with you about the ideological underpinnings of the progressives, which are almost religious in the way they polarise the issues.

      The Jones program is a sideshow by comparison with the enormous number of "progressive" activists that have been churned out by some of our humanities department, all with a good indoctrination in framing the debate and gender studies and funded in millions by ALP governments.

      It is their loud and shrill voices that are heard in reports that shape Government policy, not Jones's.

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    2. William Bruce

      Artist

      In reply to account deleted

      Too right Craig.....indoctrination is the word ....As the socialists say, one man's education is another man's propaganda.

      There is only one problem in the world and that is ignorance....and a lot of it is "Taught".

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    3. Philip Dowling

      IT teacher

      In reply to Aaron Night

      Aaron, we are in even more trouble when businesses are not profitable.

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    1. Matthew Imhoff

      Masters Student

      In reply to Sarah Joseph

      Has the advertisers' power to endorse and promote speech, back in the days when this *was* excluding other voices (as you mention the internet has made this less of a problem) only ever been used for good not evil?

      I don't agree that withdrawing advertising dollars amounts to a "power to silence". In fact I'm not convinced that this was anything more than a financial decision by the sponsors attempting to maintain their customers.

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    2. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Aaron Night

      Gawd, what a load of tripe.

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    3. Tom Fischer

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Sarah Joseph

      I'm not sure I understand the argument. Corporate power is usually used to silence progressive figures, so it shouldn't be used to silence conservative figures because then conservatives won't feel so guilty about constantly using it to silence progressive figures?

      I'm not sure asking one side of politics to tie one hand behind their backs is going to help them all that much.

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    4. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Sarah Joseph

      Online Opinion had a problem with the pro-gay lobby when it published a story that attracted commentary a couple of activists found objectionable. They weren't unhappy about the story, they just wanted the particular comments removed. For some reason Graham Young refused and as a result lost some advertisers following representations to those sponsors from the activists.

      I have no particular view about homosexuality or gay marriage, it seems fine to me if it makes people happy, but I was very uncomfortable about that. It seemed unfair to me to attack the man through his income. Surely doing that is far worse than saying something distasteful?

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    5. Sarah Joseph
      Sarah Joseph is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Director, Castan Centre for Human Rights Law at Monash University

      In reply to Tom Fischer

      I think that progressives should be trying to use new tools like social media to constrain corporate power (eg uncover instances of corporate advertising silencing) rather than encourage it. Because, as you indicate, it's probably used in reverse more often to harm progressive causes. Why legitimate that type of power? Maybe that is naive, but maybe social media is giving us a tool to take it on.

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    6. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to account deleted

      I realise this is pissing into the wind, but would the nodding donkeys who red-ticked the comment above care to discuss what they found objectionable?

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    7. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Stephen Prowse

      An entirely reasonable request, Stephen.

      It's essentially a collection of stereotypes and not very good ones. Consumers generally simply don't care about the ethics of the firms their dealing with. Microsoft has been demonised for decades, yet it remains the pre-eminent platform for home computing. Bunnings (Westfarmers) have been ruthless in creating "category killers" that drive smaller competitors out of business, as has Woolworths and Coles, yet they remain firmly in the top of lists of firms that consumers deal with regularly.

      The firms are simply responding to the loud voices of activists because it costs them less to do so than to fight a battle they don't have any interest in.

      I find the argument presented by Aaron to be unconvincing and facile, even somewhat self-serving, since I'm sure he identifies as a "progressive".

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    8. Tom Fischer

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Sarah Joseph

      But given that you indicate you believe it is already used constantly, what further "legitimation" does it require? How can social media make it "illegitimate" without finding a similar pressure point with which to change corporate behaviour?

      I worry that you're advocating prioritising personal moral purity over achieving just outcomes.

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    9. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Tom Fischer

      I'll leave that up to the interested observer. It was a significant controversy on OLO some 2 or so years ago and was discussed on other sites as well, including Ambit Gambit.

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    10. Sarah Joseph
      Sarah Joseph is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Director, Castan Centre for Human Rights Law at Monash University

      In reply to Tom Fischer

      Tim,

      You may be right. It may be a situation of "if you can't beat 'em, join 'em". I think I concede that in my last para.

      But on the other hand, social media is a new citizens' tool that could be used to out egregious egs of corporate advertising censorship, and delegitimize the practice. Maybe social media could be that pressure point.

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    11. Aaron Night

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to account deleted

      I'm not coming at this politically, I'm coming at this as someone who has worked in the advertising and marketing industry for the last fifteen years. So you're label of "self-serving" is quite ironic. And I'm telling you... you people don't get it. You're all sitting around having political and ideological discussions from the ivory tower (hasn't had a clue what goes on in the real world for years, quite frankly) and you're discussing a corporate fiction you clearly don't understand. You have to…

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    12. Sarah Joseph
      Sarah Joseph is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Director, Castan Centre for Human Rights Law at Monash University

      In reply to Aaron Night

      Wow Aaron. I have to butt in and say I am certainly not "crusading for the rights of the corporate world of advertising". I generally couldn't care less if anyone boycotts a company, and of course people have a right to do so (though I can imagine pernicious reasons to do so - I don't think the reasons here are pernicious).

      My concern is the byproduct of legitimising and normalising the censoring power of advertisers. It may be a lost cause and I concede that in the last para, in which case, as I say there, this may be a welcome addition of citizen input into relevant decisions. But maybe it is not a lost cause, and the new citizens' tools of social media can be used to "call out" this advertising practice rather than encourage it.

      Anyway ... I see you and Craig are in battle. Carry on chaps.

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    13. Aaron Night

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to account deleted

      Craig, I must say that when you say...

      "The firms are simply responding to the loud voices of activists because it costs them less to do so than to fight a battle they don't have any interest in..."

      You're actually right. This is what I've been saying - they are not taking a political or ideological stand, in the same way they don't advertise on his show for any of those reasons.

      I do know of one CEO of one of the companies involved (I know because he came and talked to me about it) and…

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    14. Peter Ormonde
      Peter Ormonde is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Farmer

      In reply to Aaron Night

      Precisely Aaron.

      It is interesting that a lot of the public comment on the Jones issue has actually come from media buyers - certainly not from the companies and advertisers themselves. Some seem most concerned that the public reaction and pressure on their advertisers will be an unwelcome development in their business and restrict one of their options for making money. I hope they're right.

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    15. Dennis Alexander

      logged in via LinkedIn

      In reply to account deleted

      Craig, I wasn't one of those who red-ticked you. What I suggest happened at OLO (I wasn't a participant) was that Mr Young's refusal to remove the "objectionable" comments was interpreted as tacit endorsement - which is not the same thing as being tacit or actual endorsement. For authors or commenters on forums like this or OLO there are only three avenues of dissent: a) argument; b) getting off the forum and staying away; and c) making a complaint through a channel calculated to be heard. Obviously…

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    16. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Dennis Alexander

      I don't have a problem with withholding custom from those with whom you have a philosophical disagreement, I've actually done so myself in the case of OLO. What I find is getting close to a demand with menaces is going to others and demanding they do the same or else.

      It's extortion.

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    17. Peter Ormonde
      Peter Ormonde is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Farmer

      In reply to account deleted

      No one is demanding you do anything Craig.

      But folks can also say they will not buy the products or services of any outfit that advertises on or sponsors the parrot. That's market power and free choice mate. And, if there is enough of us, we will greatly reduce the attraction of Mr Jones show both for advertisers and his owners.

      Or are you saying we should be compelled to cop this sludge, this entertainment as you call it? That we have no right to use what little power we have - as consumers - to scrape off this stinking mess?

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    18. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Peter Ormonde

      Peter, I do wish you wouldn't pretend to be obtuse. There is a strong and orchestrated campaign to attack his sponsors with the message that "we will hurt you if you don't support us by removing your support from Jones". As I said, extortion.

      If you don't like Jones, don't listen to him. I don't and I don't.

      Let's face it, would you want to be denied the right to speak because Jones's supporters were in the ascendancy?

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    19. Peter Ormonde
      Peter Ormonde is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Farmer

      In reply to account deleted

      Obtuse? No, I'll be blunt.

      If Alan can muster 100,000+ comments of support of folks say demanding that the ABC give's Vice queen Monckton the anchor slot on the 7.30 report, or threatening a boycott of MacDonalds because of their outright endorsement of the IPCC - good luck to them. That's what democracy is all about.

      But of course Alan isn't in the ascendancy - he is a in steep convoy of decline... largely because Australians have more sense, manners and good taste. Not even you Craig will…

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    20. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Peter Ormonde

      Peter, I don't like it because I think it is dishonest thuggery. It may be satisfying to give a thug some of his own medicine by ganging up, but it's still thuggery.

      If I were to get some friends together to come over and "persuade" you not to do something because you would be supporting someone I perceive as offensive it wouldn't be right just because there are more of us than you.

      As I said at the start, it seems to be increasingly a common view of those on the Left, especially the "latte left", that coercion is fine - against the other classes. I think that's quite dangerous and shallow thinking, driven by short-termism and a sense of superiority.

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    21. Aaron Night

      logged in via Facebook

      In reply to Sarah Joseph

      To be fair to you, Sarah, I do believe ultimately - and I suppose that's what I was alluding to in that post - that this is not you're intention, absolutely. I suppose my concern rather is that this is how it ultimately comes across, and what the result is, because I think your position diminishes and reduces what these people are doing (misunderstands it, to some extent) and so your piece becomes part of the crusade against these movements (which are very much about businesses protecting their commercial…

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    22. Sarah Joseph
      Sarah Joseph is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Director, Castan Centre for Human Rights Law at Monash University

      In reply to Aaron Night

      Aaron I think we are in agreement.

      "having NO politics wrapped up in advertising and business is better than fighting for just the moments when it suits us". That is precisely my point in the second half of the article. Or at least what I was trying to say.

      "Do we want to entrench the idea that private companies are the guardians of what is and what is not allowable speech" is a variation on that exact theme, to my mind.

      I suspect we agree on the appropriate role of corps in all this, but…

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    23. Peter Ormonde
      Peter Ormonde is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Farmer

      In reply to account deleted

      "Dishonest thuggery"? Poor little chap.

      Coercion? Blackmail? Thuggery? Dishonest? Awful.

      What this is is consumer power Craig ... large enough numbers of people getting together and letting anyone who connects themselves with either 2GB or Alan Jones in particular that it will cost them money and market share. It's consumer sovereignty Craig ..., a democratic right.

      No one is forcing, coercing or blackmailing anyone ... we're voting with our wallets as we are entitled to do. Unless…

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    24. Peter Ormonde
      Peter Ormonde is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Farmer

      In reply to Sarah Joseph

      "Do we want to entrench the idea that private companies are the guardians of what is and what is not allowable speech"?

      Well no - they obviousl;y are not ... they advertise on Big Brother and the Shire and the like ... and they advertise on Alan Jones.

      It is us - we the people - who are telling them there is a price tag on doing this... that if they buy a market of old fuddy duddies on Alan Jones they will lose a much much larger market elsewhere. We the people are the guardians of free speech and what is acceptable - not corporations and not the owners of radio stations... and definitely not Alan Jones.

      Direct action in defence of the public discourse - I love it.

      What we should do next is target the stragglers who continue to sponsor his show and send them broke. A lesson in market research.

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    25. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Peter Ormonde

      With rights come responsibilities, Peter.

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    26. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Peter Ormonde

      You demand better of Jones than of yourself.

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    27. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to account deleted

      I'm reminded of Victor Hugo's description of a loose cannon with respect to this issue:

      "You can reason with a bull dog, astonish a bull, fascinate a boa, frighten a tiger, soften a lion; no resource with such a monster as a loose cannon. You cannot kill it, it is dead; and at the same time it lives. It lives with a sinister life which comes from the infinite. It is moved by the ship, which is moved by the sea, which is moved by the wind. This exterminator is a plaything."

      The efforts to silence Jones have loosed several cannons.

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    28. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Aaron Night

      Aaron, the problem is not the desire of the firms to make profit, it is that some people feel that subverting that to the service of shutting down views that they don't want to hear is a Good Thing.

      That's largely based on the perception that they themselves can't be attacked in a similar way, which makes it cowardly, as well.

      A big crowd of cowardly bullies wrapped up in a flag of their own making and determined to burn down things they don't understand.

      We are not revolutionary France and these people are not oppressed peasants; they are often professional people, a large cohort of whom make a living on the public purse, who should know better but really like the idea of having a protest, especially if they don't have to leave their desk.

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    29. Peter Ormonde
      Peter Ormonde is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Farmer

      In reply to account deleted

      Of course you are Craig... of course you are. Lord knows I am reminded of some quote from Victor Hugo myself almost daily.

      As for holding Jones to a higher standard - not really - I don't sell my opinions; I don't wage campaigns on a radio station only to drop them completely when the victims' cheques have cleared, I don't attack people because of their race, religion or gender, I don't inflame Cronulla thugs. I don't smear scientists or make unhinged allegations about police blocking his convoy of no consequence...

      I just want him to be held to some or any standard really. Not by me, by us.

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    30. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Peter Ormonde

      The fact that he is more successful than you at marketing his opinions isn't a justification, Peter.

      And you do attack people because of all sorts of characteristics that you think matter to you, whilst you don't consider that the characteristics Jones uses are validly available for such use. It's a simple double standard being used to justify cowardly bullying.

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    31. Peter Ormonde
      Peter Ormonde is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Farmer

      In reply to account deleted

      Craig,

      For goodness sakes get a few facts under your belt son.

      Have a google at "cash for comments" - or better read Chris Masters excellent book.

      Jones would engage in a vitriolic campaign against a target - say QANTAS or Telstra or some property developer on his show. He would then enter into negotiations and the campaign would cease - or depending on the money he would reverse his criticisms and become and ardent enthusiast.

      This is not "marketing" one's opinions Craig. This is having one's opinions for sale ... a media hooker, whose affections were for sale, and who would essentially blackmail his targets into forking over the cash. A protection racket.

      Do some reading Craig. Get some facts.

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    32. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Peter Ormonde

      "What we should do next is target the stragglers who continue to sponsor his show and send them broke. "

      Your words. Cowardly bullying.

      I don't need to know anything about Jones to find it abhorrent.

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    33. Peter Ormonde
      Peter Ormonde is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Farmer

      In reply to account deleted

      Oh ... I'm assaulting that most sacred of our freedoms - the right to make a buck.

      Personally I reckon that folks who reckon there is brand value to be found in feeding Alan Jones with advertising revenue and sponsorship are sowing the wind... and they should reap the whirlwind. It's a choice. It is their choice. But there is a cost involved. And that cost involves degrading one's brand in the eyes of folks who think Jones is an excressence. They can keep sponsoring Jones. But it will cost them our share of the market.

      This is the market at work Craig... nothing particularly bolshie about it. We are exercising our freedom to choose and to be selective about what brands we buy based on their conduct and contribution to public life.

      It's like refusing to buy cage chicken eggs, or blood diamonds, or shoes made in sweat-shops. Or are you saying we should be compelled to buy these unethical products as well?

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    34. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Peter Ormonde

      Got nothing to do with ethics. What if the organic chicken farmer advertises successfully on Jones's show?

      None of what you advocate is anything but cowardly bullying which you try to justify on the basis that a few people click on a computerised petition and the media whips it into a frenzy.

      It's not the market at work, it's self-deluded.

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    35. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Peter Ormonde

      And I do value the right to make a buck pretty highly, thanks. I suppose if you've never had to worry about the employer going broke because you work for the Government it might be possible to hold a different view.

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    36. Peter Ormonde
      Peter Ormonde is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Farmer

      In reply to account deleted

      Ah yes... I am reminded of that great man Victor Hugo and his endless list of quotable bits:

      “There is one thing stronger than all the armies in the world, and that is an idea whose time has come.”

      And this idea is that Jones is no longer acceptable in our public life.

      But feel free Craig to fill your trolley with products advertised on Alan's show ... spend up big ... show your support... wave the flag ...exercise your freedom to choose.

      And like I suggested, get your opinions informed by some facts. Read, Craig. You have no entitlement to an ignorant opinion.

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    37. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Peter Ormonde

      Peter, I couldn't give two hoots about Jones or his show. I'm interested in the fact that you are advocating "sending them broke" if they so much as advertise on Jones's show.

      You're not bullying Jones, you sanctimonious nitwit, you're bullying the businesses and their employees and owners. You're being the stand-over man you accuse Jones of representing.

      You think you can do that safely because they have no similar power to threaten you. That makes you a coward as well.

      I repudiate your view completely.

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    38. Peter Ormonde
      Peter Ormonde is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Farmer

      In reply to account deleted

      Of course you don't give two hoots about Jones or his show ... you know nothing about the bloke, how he operates or his history, how he drags public discussion into the gutter.... couldn't care less. But you DO care about the freedom to make a quid, to sponsor his show and do so without consequence.

      Well, with a bit of luck, if there are enough of us, there will be consequences.

      I'm not suggesting that the government take the parrot off air, that he be censored. I am suggesting that he be…

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    39. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Peter Ormonde

      What you're suggesting is a secondary boycott, Peter. It's illegal in industrial law.

      The law in that case understands that expanding the conflict beyond the parties is simply not either ethical or constructive. It's simply thuggery and extortion, no matter how you'd like to try to justify it.

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    40. Peter Ormonde
      Peter Ormonde is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Farmer

      In reply to account deleted

      My god! It's illegal! Under "industrial law" ... how shocking!

      Just as well there'd be some issues with compelling folks to purchase goods and services advertised on the Alan Jones show, let alone determining that our shopping trolleys come under the jurisdiction of the Full Bench.

      I've never agreed with the bans on secondary boycotts myself. I reckon it's an infringement of our freedoms.

      You folks don't like it when we "looney lefties" invoke our market power as consumers do you? Should be a law! Must be illegal! Trouble is it ain't.

      Are you suggesting that a refusal to buy Alan Jones' endorsed products should be a criminal act? That anything Alan flogs on his show should be compulsory? What an excellent idea. Let's get those shopping trolley inspectors in place now.

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    41. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Peter Ormonde

      I'm suggesting that inciting others to do so is indeed illegal for trade unions and other parties to industrial actions.

      The principal is that the parties should confine their fight to themselves, instead of dragging in third parties and threatening their livelihoods, as you propose.

      All the rest of your polemic is just heaps of steaming manure.

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    42. Peter Ormonde
      Peter Ormonde is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Farmer

      In reply to account deleted

      Third parties? Innocent bystanders Craig?

      Not really. I'm simply proposing that anyone advertising or sponsoring Alan Jones makes a deliberate choice to weigh in and allow this low-life to spew his venom. And there's a price tag on that.

      They choose to involve themselves.

      Now try and actually answer the points rather than just throw shit and abuse about. If you can.

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    43. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Peter Ormonde

      You don't have a point Peter, you're just ranting.

      My point was made way back.

      What you advocate is cowardly bullying of innocent third parties for doing no more than running their business. I think that's a pretty poor way of going about things and I've shown why, to which all you can do is reiterate your irrelevancies.

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    44. Peter Ormonde
      Peter Ormonde is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Farmer

      In reply to account deleted

      I'm not ranting Craig - I'm laughing at you.... and your silly ideas in defence of Alan Jones and the right to make a quid doing well anything at all really.

      Speaking of which, what sort of business might you think Alan actually engages in .... a radio personality? a commentator? an entertainer? or a stand-over man?

      Enough for today ... I've gotta take the dogs for a walk.

      Self abuse is not self employment Craig.

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    45. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Peter Ormonde

      Yes Peter, the right to make a living is something that I hold as important. You are smugly secure in the knowledge that you don't have to, apparently.

      I will reiterate for the last time that I have no interest in Jones. My interest is in your cowardly advocacy of secondary boycott-type assaults on the right of other people to make a living, just because you disagree with Jones.

      You're just a thug hiding in a crowd of thugs.

      I'll take your word about the self-abuse, I presume you to be an expert on the subject.

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    46. Peter Sommerville

      Scientist & Technologist

      In reply to account deleted

      It is probably time for you Craig and Peter too, to agree to disagree. Your exchange is getting personal and nasty. It has been an interesting and very robust debate. I for one have followed it with interest. But if it continues in the current vein the moderator will be obliged to snip and that would be a pity.

      I hope both of you accept this intervention in the spirit that is intended.

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    47. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Peter Sommerville

      I agree, Peter.

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    48. Helen Pringle

      Senior Lecturer at UNSW Australia

      In reply to Sarah Joseph

      I see no problem with questioning the wisdom of such a campaign, whether for "good or evil" (whatever that means in this context). The problem is framing Jones as a question of freedom of speech. No one (individual or corporation) is "censoring" Jones by withdrawing their advertising from the radio station. No one is constraining his freedom of speech by criticising him in a petition, and no one is constraining his freedom of speech by calling for him to be sacked. Not even the radio station would…

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    49. Helen Pringle

      Senior Lecturer at UNSW Australia

      In reply to Peter Ormonde

      But he is not denied the right to speak. He can speak all he likes down the pub, on the pavement, in the park, outside the radio station offices. If he is sacked, he is not silenced, he is just not paid for speaking. So bIg deal, most of us are not paid for speaking. That is a problem but it is not a problem about free speech, it is about the inequitable distribution of power (and of authority) in our society and culture.

      That Jones is not paid any more may be a problem in various sorts of ways but he cannot reasonably claim that he is silenced, censored or denied his right to speak. And it cannot reasonably be said by any of us that freedom of speech would be endangered by not paying Jones.

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    50. Peter Sommerville

      Scientist & Technologist

      In reply to Helen Pringle

      Sarah is on holidays so she is unlikely to respond!

      Methinks there is an agenda behind this post Helen. Sarah's argument was simple and clear. Your commentary is barely related to Sarah's proposition. I am not sure you understand that. It is a rant which is very difficult to follow. I would have expected a "Senior Lecturer" to have a better grasp of English, and certainly more able to deliver a message than you have achieved here.

      Who is "Colonel Agarn" - another twitter freak?

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    51. Helen Pringle

      Senior Lecturer at UNSW Australia

      In reply to Peter Sommerville

      Peter, have we met? Perhaps I am mistaken, but I don't think so. However, you seem to be clairvoyant about my purposes in writing a comment on a site that invites comments (even when the writer is away, horrors!). So I am wondering if you could also post this week's lotto numbers when you are done constructing an "agenda" (huh?) for me. "Methinks" (!) it would be good if you could get the lotto numbers more accurately than your reading of me.

      You are right to pull me up about Agarn. I mis-remembered him as Colonel, he is in fact Corporal.

      What is a "twitter freak"?

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    52. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Peter Sommerville

      Helen, the problem is not with Jones being denied free speech,which your argument trivially addresses, It is about making orchestrated threats to others to the effect that "if you don't stop listening to him, we're going to hurt you".

      I'm sure, after reading your stuff elsewhere, that you wouldn't be supportive of coercion in other circumstances, so why do you support it in this one?

      It seems to me that it's merely because you don't "like" Jones, which seems pretty flimsy to me. What about the effect on the people who are threatened simply for placing advertising on the show? Don't their rights to conduct lawful business trump your right to act out on your dislike? If not, why?

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    53. Peter Ormonde
      Peter Ormonde is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Farmer

      In reply to account deleted

      "if you don't stop listening to him, we're going to hurt you"

      No ... only in your own mind Craig.

      The threat with menaces is directed not to Alan's hapless hearers - it is to those who sponsor him and advertise on his bile duct of a program. Those who pay the piper.

      It comes down to taste - what is acceptable in a pluralist democracy. And to over 100,000 of us Alan Jones is beyond the pale.

      It's about standards of public comment. At least for us. And there are a lot of us.

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    54. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Peter Ormonde

      I've already heard your repugnant views on mob rule, Peter. I agreed with Peter Somerville that there was little to be gained by giving them further air. I still do, no matter how large your button-clicking mob may be.

      You're no Robespierre and a mob of sheep isn't a revolution.

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    55. Peter Ormonde
      Peter Ormonde is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Farmer

      In reply to account deleted

      Repugnant? The views of over 100,000 people are repugnant to you Craig. And the government. And various media regulators and folks like Chris Masters and Media Watch and pretty much any decent person who examines Jones and his business model.

      Yet Alan Jones - to whom you do not listen - is quite worth the air time apparently. On principle. I wonder what that principle is.

      That women are wrecking the joint? That Lebanese Australians are a danger to our way of life? That rioting in Cronulla is OK? That elected politicians and the Prime Minister should be dumped in a chaff bag? That the police are blocking his convoy of no consequence? Alan is a big fan of mob rule actually.

      I hope you start listening to him Craig. It would improve the tone and content of your comments here.

      I guess revulsion is in the eye of the beholder. All 200,000 eyes. And more of them are opening every day.

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    56. Peter Ormonde
      Peter Ormonde is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Farmer

      In reply to Peter Ormonde

      And incidentally I think you are verballing Peter Somerville. What he said was this:

      "It is probably time for you Craig and Peter too, to agree to disagree. Your exchange is getting personal and nasty. It has been an interesting and very robust debate. I for one have followed it with interest. But if it continues in the current vein the moderator will be obliged to snip and that would be a pity.

      I hope both of you accept this intervention in the spirit that is intended."

      I think he was drawing attention to the persponal abuse and allegations being made. I agree with him. But this is what debate and discussion has become apparently... fact free and abusive. I blame Alan Jones myself.

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    57. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Peter Ormonde

      I'm afraid I don't agree with you, Peter. Go and play with your mob, there's a good chap. Unless they've lost interest already, of course. Short attention spans, sheep.

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    58. Peter Ormonde
      Peter Ormonde is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Farmer

      In reply to account deleted

      A yes - the rabble, the stinking herd - how distasteful. These matters should be left to those charged with the protection of our freedoms and rights ... like TV station executives, media buyers and advertisers. Decent upright folks with assets and a vested interest to protect.

      Now speaking of sheep, In 7 weeks Woolies will hold an emergency general meeting of its shareholders. It has been forced to do this by Get Up which has been campaigning against Woolies' domination of pokies and its apparent strategy of plantingthem in socially and economically disadvantaged suburbs.

      The odds are impossible on getting a decent vote - but Woolies will be wading through an ocean of bad press and ugly facts about their business strategy... stuff they would prefer not openly discussed.

      Tell Woolies that the mob - these sheep, dumb and vacuous - don't matter.

      Even sheep have teeth. We will nibble them into decent behaviour.

      No more Silence of the Lambs.

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    59. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Peter Ormonde

      That's an example of people directly addressing the entity involved, not threatening some third party with some vague threat of "sending them broke" for going about their lawful business.

      I'll lay a wager with you that Jones will be as genuinely concerned by your mob as Woolworths will and for the same reason. In a short while everything will be back to normal and your flurry of righteous indignation will have gained you little more than heartburn.

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    60. Peter Ormonde
      Peter Ormonde is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Farmer

      In reply to account deleted

      Exactly Craig - life will go on ... the right to make a quid will remain sacred ... the mob will return to chewing its cud ... and the country will continue to be run by fit and proper decent folks. These sheep must be taught that they are destined to a choppy sort of future, and will at best continue to be fleeced.

      So yep - it's not easy changing things - so maybe not this time. Maybe next. But I wouldn't be placing big wagers just yet. Don't underestimate the taste and decency of your neighbours Craig.

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    61. emily vicendese

      undergrad

      In reply to Peter Ormonde

      "It comes down to taste - what is acceptable in a pluralist democracy. And to over 100,000 of us Alan Jones is beyond the pale."

      Wow. I've never seen anyone so blatantly advocate the tyranny of the majority before.

      I don't agree with Alan Jones on any of the important issues, but I certainly don't want to live in a society where minority views are suppressed.

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    62. Peter Ormonde
      Peter Ormonde is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Farmer

      In reply to emily vicendese

      It's not about "suppressing the views of a minority" Emily.

      While I find Jones' views rather silly and uninformed, that's not what I object to. Please google up "cash for comment", or have a look at Chris Masters' rather excellent biography of Jones.

      It's not his views - it's his methods, his mugging with a mike, the way he uses his soapbox to extort money from his targets. This person is deeply corrupt. He is a menace to freedom, posturing as a defender of it.

      There is much more to this issue than Jones' rabid frothings.

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    63. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Peter Ormonde

      Indeed there is, there's the rabid frothings of those who are seeking to shut him down...

      Speaking of menaces to freedom, I see that Gillard is hosting a facebook Q&A...

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    64. Peter Ormonde
      Peter Ormonde is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Farmer

      In reply to account deleted

      Aw come on fess up Craig - you just don't like this democracy business - this mob, this rabble, making a fuss... demanding that companies do this and that... interfering with the basic human right to make a quid by any available means. There should be a law! It's a secondary boycott! It's blackmail! How dare you not buy our stuff!!!!

      Democracy is just about voting isn't it - for what is on offer - otherwise we have anarchy loosed upon the land... So vote and then go home and stop off at the…

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    65. Peter Sommerville

      Scientist & Technologist

      In reply to Helen Pringle

      I have to admit Helen the reference to "Colonel Agarn" irked me. One of my favourite F Troop characters receiving a sudden promotion seemed a bit peculiar.

      Otherwise I found your argument difficult to follow, particularly in the context of Sarah's article. Maybe I was blinded by your final remark.

      No, I don't know you.

      Definition of a twitter freak? Kevin Rudd, Charlotte, Catherine Deveny etc etc.

      But I agree that this is not an argument about Jone's freedom of speech. It is an argument about attempts to silence him. There is a subtle but important difference. The first is an issue of principle. The second is arrant politics.

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    66. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Peter Ormonde

      Peter, it seems that the organisers of change'org have had a little time to think about the situation and have chosen to stop the cowardly targetting of small firms

      "Meanwhile, organisers of the campaign against Jones have revealed they have struck an agreement with Macquarie Radio Network to not target small businesses that advertise with Jones's show.

      Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/entertainment/advertisers-return-to-alan-jones--then-leave-again-20121016-27om8.html#ixzz29RkMtwkU";

      Good on them. They seem to have a stronger ethical understanding than some on this forum whose approach to those small businesses was to "target them and send them broke".

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    67. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Peter Ormonde

      Oh dear Peter, I should have those delusions of your checked out if I were you. They can't be a good sign.

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    68. Peter Ormonde
      Peter Ormonde is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Farmer

      In reply to account deleted

      Craig.... the science is in ... 93.7% of all signs bode ill. All my signs certainly do.

      Do you get optimistic signs ... notions of winning Lotto ... of buying a really excellent truck really cheap... of meeting someone nice in some massive online game world?

      Or are you immune to signs yourself? Do you scoff at your own portents and omens?

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  2. account deleted

    logged in via email @gmail.com

    And then, of course there's the elitism: "these are not educated people", "Jones literally has power over their thoughts", etc.

    Guess which Party the majority of Jones's listeners vote for?

    Sadly, it's the Party that used to be the Party of the worker and now belongs to people like those referenced, who despise those very workers for daring to disagree with their "betters".

    Tragic and a good reason for the ALP to be abandoned in favour of a new model.

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    1. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Sarah Joseph

      Sarah, that report was done in 2006, and those people had all been targetted deliberately by Howard for years. They felt safe in his hands, but as "pensioners and others with incomes around the average." they are natural ALP supporters. This is why Howard courted them - he got a double benefit by both getting their vote and taking it away from the ALP.

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    2. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Sarah Joseph

      I'm sorry, that's avoiding the issue. They are still people who should be rusted on to the ALP, but were seduced to the Coalition by Howard and somewhat driven into his arms by Keating.

      They are working class people who feel the ALP is no longer their Party.

      I'm one of them, although I don't listen to Jones - apart from anything else his voice grates on my nerves and his politics are much more to the right than mine.

      I don't want to shut him up though, any more than I want to shut up the usual professional feminist commentators when they launch into one of their misandric rants.

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    1. Zvyozdochka

      logged in via Twitter

      In reply to Sarah Joseph

      "I'd actually prefer the regulator to be exercising power here"

      Me too, but unfortunately I think we'll be waiting, and waiting ....

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    2. Neil Gibson

      Retired Electronics Engineer

      In reply to Sarah Joseph

      And who will regulate the regulator? You don't think that corporate advertisers should be in control of 2GB policy and think a government appointed regulation body will do better. The ABC has a Government appointed board and is supposed to be the people's radio and TV . Since more than 50% of Australians are in the conservative camp why are not 50% of ABC journalists conservative to better represent their audience.You would be flat out finding one in the whole joint and only if you look very hard…

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    3. William Bruce

      Artist

      In reply to Zvyozdochka

      Ok Lemmings, lets set up another PS department to "police opinions"....and Jokes!....

      I really can't believe all this stupidity....Nodding Donkeys? ..Too right!

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  3. Ann Davie

    logged in via Facebook

    I've never felt comfortable clicking online surveys and petitions for such things as I tend to think that much like the advertisers who have temporarily pulled their ads, people who lazily click such things don't really have their hearts in it...they're going through the motions. However, it does appear that this effort has indeed hit Jones and his radio station where it hurts - its share price - http://www.facebook.com/?ref=logo#!/photo.php?fbid=429985663715850&set=a.419017344812682.83661.418382174876199&type=1&theater

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    1. Sarah Joseph
      Sarah Joseph is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Director, Castan Centre for Human Rights Law at Monash University

      In reply to Ann Davie

      It'll be interesting to see how far the share price goes down, and if it stays there. I don't know that the Kyle Sandilands imbroglio ended up doing that much damage - he seems to be still on the air doing his thing.

      I don't think I agree with the notion that all of Jones' audience are the same. I am sure he has lost some through this process. He has probably gained some though, with people wanting to know what the fuss is about. Streisand effect.

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    1. Sarah Joseph
      Sarah Joseph is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Director, Castan Centre for Human Rights Law at Monash University

      In reply to Tim Mazzarol

      I think it was $100 per head at the Sydney Uni function.

      I don't disagree with anything that you say. I guess my concerns are:

      - whether advent of social media collective outrage means we reach for "trigger" of shutting people down too quickly. Can easily rebound. I won't shed a tear if Jones show disappears but I would if some other shows perhaps did.

      - also issue of corporate censorship power through advertising. That is probably insoluble. But I'm uncomfortable with it being encouraged.

      I guess I'd feel more comfortable if his audience shrank, like that of Glenn Beck.

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  4. Brooksy

    logged in via Twitter

    Actuall I disagree with most of this conspiracy & motivation rubbish thats being bandied about. From the view of catylist I believe the majority acted from simple outrage of the deliberate nature of the remark.
    Not his relationship to LNP & not to 2GB who I dont listen too anyway.
    A man using hostile contemptable tones declared at a gathering that a girls behaviour so shamed her father it killed him.
    All Australia knows that was a horrible & deliberate lie.
    So she is the PM so what.
    Want to…

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    1. Sarah Joseph
      Sarah Joseph is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Director, Castan Centre for Human Rights Law at Monash University

      In reply to Brooksy

      I have no problem with people "calling him out" for making a vile statement. I have no problem that this incident is causing people to rake over his appalling history.

      My issue, as I said, is the campaign to shut him down rather than simply to highlight his horribleness. The old argument of defeating bad speech with better speech. Again, I am sure the campaigners have very good will. But I am not sure such campaigns are inherently a good thing, and could backfire, particularly if it ends up being successful. As in the precedent could backfire.

      I will not shed a tear if the campaign succeeds in shutting down Jones. But I suspect it could lead to similar campaigns to shut down people who I have more time for.

      I'd prefer him to fade away rather than go out in a blaze. And I think he is fading away, and contributing to his own downfall with despicable comments like the "shame" one.

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    2. Sarah Joseph
      Sarah Joseph is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Director, Castan Centre for Human Rights Law at Monash University

      In reply to Joe Gartner

      So would you say that about any commentator on any commercial radio show. Obviously they'd have to say something bad in order to prompt a campaign, but do you say that all of it is simply "commercial speech". Jones, Mike Carlton, Derryn Hinch, Eddie McGuire ... whoever (I listen to the ABC so I don't really know)

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    3. Stephen Prowse

      Research Advisor

      In reply to Brooksy

      This discussion is much more than analytical conversation of little substance. It is about a persons right to say something and about how the community responds to the comments. Perhaps more importantly, its about where do we draw the line.

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    1. Sarah Joseph
      Sarah Joseph is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Director, Castan Centre for Human Rights Law at Monash University

      In reply to Dan Smith

      My point re the 100k was actually in silent tribute to Fran, with whom I argued about this on Twitter last night. She was claiming that this was some sort of democratic call for Jones to be taken off air, as have others, so I felt compelled to point out that the numbers didn't work in that sense. I should probably have been more explicit about that. Yes, many may not have signed but really - if people feel strongly it is hardly a difficult thing to do.

      I didn't mean to indicate that the protest…

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    2. Fran Barlow

      teacher

      In reply to Dan Smith

      Thanks Dan. This was a very well composed response that added to what I would have said on this matter if I'd got in first.

      @ProfSarahJ said:

      "My point re the 100k was actually in silent tribute to Fran, with whom I argued about this on Twitter last night. She was claiming that this was some sort of democratic call for Jones to be taken off air, as have others, so I felt compelled to point out that the numbers didn't work in that sense."

      The problem is Sarah, and Dan rather puts his finger…

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    3. Joe Gartner

      Eating Cake

      In reply to Fran Barlow

      Thanks for the kudos, but I've now had to change my login name from Johanne to Joe to make my gender clear! Don't worry it's not the first time.

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    4. Sarah Joseph
      Sarah Joseph is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Director, Castan Centre for Human Rights Law at Monash University

      In reply to Fran Barlow

      It probably is healthy that people cared, but time will tell how much of it is slactivism, a common criticism of online activism - it's not very difficult. As I say, I have doubts many of those 100k will actually boycott if it came to the crunch. Jones' base isn't into social media so an FB page is not likely to be representative.

      There are plenty of stations Jones' listeners can listen to. It seems absurd to assume it's because they can't be bothered changing the dial. If it is then he's really…

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    5. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Sarah Joseph

      "forgive me if II fear for the precedent of "We are outraged. Shut him down" (as opposed to "he is outrageous, stop listening")."

      Precisely.

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    6. Dan Smith

      Network Engineer

      In reply to Sarah Joseph

      Yes I must've missed the "silent tribute" vibe! The removal of "someone else's listening pleasures" is interesting. I think this is a secondary concern and you're being too generous in considering it. Most successful campaigns will impact the pleasures of others, but by itself this doesn't seem like a good reason to desist, otherwise we'd still be puffing away in the office because some of us find it pleasurable. However, we all (myself included) reach for the pearls when the magic phrase "free speech…

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    7. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to account deleted

      Erm, I was agreeing with the post above, which didn't get red ticks. Silly, silly nodding donkeys.

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    8. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Dan Smith

      "Most successful campaigns will impact the pleasures of others, but by itself this doesn't seem like a good reason to desist, otherwise we'd still be puffing away in the office because some of us find it pleasurable. "

      So where do you draw the line between persuasion and coercion? It disturbs me that our country seems ever-more willing to coerce. I suspect that has a lot to do with the polarisation of debate that is a feature of so much public discourse. If neither side believes the other has…

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    9. Sarah Joseph
      Sarah Joseph is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Director, Castan Centre for Human Rights Law at Monash University

      In reply to Dan Smith

      Dan,

      I think that this type of "shut them down" campaign could proliferate if the Jones one succeeds. And could threaten many platforms a la OO. Will it affect the left? I'm not sure. I watch the ABC too much ;-). But I think it's a concern that it could affect less deserving targets than Jones.

      As for campaigns impacting others' pleasures, I don't think smoking in offices is a good comparator. One doesn't have to listen tonJones whereas one has to deal with passive smoke. It is easy not to…

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    10. Sarah Joseph
      Sarah Joseph is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Director, Castan Centre for Human Rights Law at Monash University

      In reply to account deleted

      It is interesting the rush to support the battlers, the working families (what about working couples or singles, & let's not even think about the non working people). It sounds like an attempt to manufacture "class war" without mentioning it.

      Then when things like the mining tax come along, or even Swan's failure to cut company tax in May budget, sine arts of the press scream "class war"! Probably Jones too - I wouldn't know as I happily don't listen.

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    11. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Sarah Joseph

      The reason for the"family" support is that it was a mantra of Hawke, who was desperate to capture the votes of women who had benefitted from the Whitlam educational reforms a well as the large number of women who had become single following the Whitlam Family Law reforms (no fault divorce, especially) and who had potentially moved from the working class to the middle class as a result. His personal appeal among women was high and he implemented several policies that have become the bulwark of feminist…

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    12. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to account deleted

      "The reason for the"family" support is that it was a mantra of Hawke, who was desperate to capture the votes of women who had benefitted from the Whitlam educational reforms a well as the large number of women who had become single following the Whitlam Family Law reforms (no fault divorce, especially) and who had potentially moved from the working class to the middle class as a result."

      Should have edited more thoroughly. I should have said that the women who had received the educational benefit had moved to the middle class, I wasn't implying that necessarily applies to those who became divorced, although that can be a financial benefit to women who get the lions share of the family assets but a limited share of the liabilities, as seems to be prevalent.

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    13. Neil Gibson

      Retired Electronics Engineer

      In reply to Fran Barlow

      If Fran has her way we will have government by the left-wing twitterati who are so much "smarter" than the rest of us. A recurring theme in the remarks here, implied or overt, is of the stupidity of Allan Jones listeners compared to the intelligentsia represented here. Of course his audience is predominantly of the right and according to Chris Murphy uneducated . This nation was not built by people swanning around universities but by the very people Murphy denigrates - good decent people who believe…

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    1. Mat Ram

      Disenfranchised Foreigner

      In reply to Joe Gartner

      Lest we forget that Jones is a Queensland alumnus, the sandstoned University of Redneck Royalty that (in)breeds a lot of what is wrong with Australia... see also Swan, Newman, Bligh et al

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    2. Philip Dowling

      IT teacher

      In reply to Mat Ram

      So Mat Ram is a believer in some kind of geographical determinism. Perhaps he might like to advise us where he comes from so that we can form a judgement about his qualities.

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    3. David Arthur

      resistance gnome

      In reply to Mat Ram

      Is Rupert Murdoch a "disenfranchised foreigner"?

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    4. David Arthur

      resistance gnome

      In reply to Sarah Joseph

      Sarah, would you be so good as to consider your otherwise excellent commentary in the light of Patrick Stokes's defence of evidence-based positions under the rather provocative title, "No, you're not entitled to your opinion" (https://theconversation.edu.au/no-youre-not-entitled-to-your-opinion-9978)?

      The Jones-pushed message that really perturbs me is his ongoing Denial of climate science, apparently motivated by an (ill-founded) belief that climate science is a commie/druggie/greenie plot.

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    5. emily vicendese

      undergrad

      In reply to David Arthur

      David, the only relevancy of Stokes' piece in this case is that we are under no obligation to respect Jones' opinion (or anyone's opinion) simply because it is his opinion. It has no implications for the strategy of putting pressure on his capacity to broadcast his opinions on the radio.

      Fwiw, I think Prof Joseph is on the money. It's nice to read a dispassionate and principled piece on these issue for a change: usually partisan thinking prevails.

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    6. David Arthur

      resistance gnome

      In reply to Sarah Joseph

      Thanks Prof Joseph.

      We are in the early stages of learning about the adverse consequences of the public at large disregarding considered expert advice; had science been heeded two decades ago, much of the misery that will ensue over the next millenium or so would have been avoided.

      Mr Jones, along with numerous other prominent lay people, have assisted this by their promotion of fabrications promoted and funded by fossil fuel profits.

      While Mr Jones has a right to free speech, surely he also has a responsibility to speak prudently when exercising that right?

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    7. Sarah Joseph
      Sarah Joseph is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Director, Castan Centre for Human Rights Law at Monash University

      In reply to David Arthur

      The right to free speech in international human rights law is not unqualified. In particular, hate speech must be prohibited - that isn't speech which is hateful (as Jones' "shame" comment was) but rather speech which incites others to violence against another group on basis of race (eg his comments re Lebanese Muslims and Cronulla riots).

      States are allowed to limit free speech on various grounds, eg national security and so on. But a blanket ban on "untrue" speech is not allowed. Furthermore…

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    8. William Bruce

      Artist

      In reply to Sarah Joseph

      1. "The right to free speech in international human rights law is not unqualified.
      Response: NO BUT IT OUGHT TO BE with one exception that it causes real injury or harm. Sometimes it's a question of far LESS harm being cauesd. Freedom of expression restrictions & defamation "Laws" virtually ALWAYS protect the wrongdoers. They very dangerous....Ignorance is the problem and communication. not POLITICAL communication, is the best remedy.
      2. In particular, hate speech which incites others to violence…

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  5. Brad Stringer

    logged in via Twitter

    As I tweeted to my army of followers yesterday, what makes me uncomfortable with campaigns such as that against Jones (who I don't listen to, support or actually care about at all really) is that they are all well and good while you agree with the mob but what happens when you don't?

    I personally don't want to see SBS pull some informative show about, say, abortion or heroin use, because of a particular lobby convincing advertisers to pull funding for ads.

    To that extent, I agree with the author.

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    1. Stephen Prowse

      Research Advisor

      In reply to Sarah Joseph

      Sarah, thank you for your thoughtful articles and your willingness to engage in the discussion which at times must be a little tiresome.

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  6. Peter Ormonde
    Peter Ormonde is a Friend of The Conversation.

    Farmer

    This is about what we consider acceptable in our public discourse... whether Jones is entitled to say anything that enters his head. Whether misogyny and racism and sectarian hatred is all OK - part of the new rough and tumble of Australian public life?

    Important word that "entitled". By what does Jones have such an entitlement? Some notion of "free speech"?

    What about those companies that fund this individual and their motives for doing so? Folks with short memories are nudged towards…

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    1. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Peter Ormonde

      He's an entertainer, Peter. Ifyou don't find him entertaining, don't listen.

      Problem solved.

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    2. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Peter Ormonde

      "He has no talents at all that I can see"

      But he has talents that lots of other people DO see and are prepared to pay for.

      Pay millions, in fact.

      Whether you like the entertainment is somewhat irrelevant.

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    3. Philip Dowling

      IT teacher

      In reply to Peter Ormonde

      Peter, I find it puzzling that you are so well-acquainted with the Alan Jones show.

      You along with many others are giving his station priceless publicity - for free.
      I suspect that his next ratings will show a jump. He will probably even get a few listeners from Kyle Sandilands.

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    4. Jack Bloomfield

      Retired Engineer

      In reply to Peter Ormonde

      Hear hear Peter,

      Might I add that there has been little direct reference to Jones apparent inability to examine facts or represent issues truthfully.
      The truth or facts of an issue are but minor side issues when it comes to performing an ideological rant.

      A common trait of most "shock jocks" is their inability to accept/absorb basic facts that may contradict their views. When it comes to examining facts they have a childish attention span of about 10 seconds.

      If you can bear the pain, listen to this "interview" with David Karol on the issue of climate change. http://podcasts.mrn.com.au.s3.amazonaws.com/alanjones/20110525-aj2-davidkaroly.mp3
      His bullying idological arrogance is breathtaking.

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    5. Peter Ormonde
      Peter Ormonde is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Farmer

      In reply to account deleted

      Precisely Craig - and we should make his advertisers and sponsors aware of the cost of associating themselves with him.

      No shortage of folks out there seething with unsatisfied wants, outraged senses of personal entitlement and of course fear, anger and hatred of anything and anyone different - no shortage at all.

      But they are dying out slowly ... I'd be blaming all that moral indignation and outrage myself - very bad for one.

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    6. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Peter Ormonde

      There is no cost of association, there is a cost of perception management. The interesting thing is that the perceptions being managed are those of people who don't even listen to the show.

      Everyone gets old and as we do our opinions usually change and mature. If that doesn't happen, it usually means one has either not considered the matters properly, or that there is some perception that one's views are irrevocably and unchangeably part of one's personality.

      That doesn't make them more valid, just more deeply entrenched.

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    7. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Peter Ormonde

      So why all the fuss? After all, if you're right the "problem" is rapidly solving itself.

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    8. Peter Ormonde
      Peter Ormonde is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Farmer

      In reply to account deleted

      Because by tolerating Jones and others like him we allow public discussion and serious issues of our times to be smeared by his excremental vision and abuse. It's a matter of taste and respect for one's neighbours really.

      You're right though - Alan's influence is atrophying - rapidly. Not just in his audience but in those willing to subject themselves to being "guests" on his show. So he becomes more frenzied, more strident in his efforts to remain relevant and significant.

      Alan's greatest…

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  7. Dianna Arthur

    Environmentalist

    Some people believe that "free speech" is without responsibility or consequence - they are a predictable segment of the human population; we see them here claiming that free speech is a the right to be insulting rather than informative.

    Getting rid of Jones (which isn't going to happen) will not make any improvement to the level of intellectual discourse in our nation. Leave him be to spout his nonsense, else he be replaced by another, perhaps more subtle progenitor of the extreme right. Meanwhile, Jones makes his fans look like a bunch of dumb red-necks by association.

    We can keep on carrying on like a bunch of outraged fundamentalists, or we can simply note what Jones has said and move on.

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    1. Peter Ormonde
      Peter Ormonde is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Farmer

      In reply to Dianna Arthur

      Mornin' Ms A...

      One of the interesting things about Jones is that his form of "entertainment" has victims - always victims, a target - be they Lebanese, muslims, women, politicians ... anyone he doesn't like - and that's a long, long list.

      The cynic in me (who I normally keep in a box) suggests that the appropriate answer for Jones is to swamp 2GB with government advertising - and to buy his silence or perhaps even his enthusiastic support.

      I can't agree that we should just note his abuse and move on. I don't like bullies and "men" who abuse outsiders and the marginalised. That's his stock in trade - his sole "talent". It's like watching or listening to a mugging and not weighing in. That's not a microphone - it's a cosh.

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    2. account deleted

      logged in via email @gmail.com

      In reply to Dianna Arthur

      "Meanwhile, Jones makes his fans look like a bunch of dumb red-necks by association."

      I think this sits quite well with Diana's frequent reference to women as "52% of the population", as though that makes any male view irrelevant.

      It's much easier to believe you're right if you can simply ignore anybody who disagrees as either a minority or "dumb red-necks". After all, you don't have to listen to inconvenient facts, for a start...

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    3. Dianna Arthur

      Environmentalist

      In reply to Peter Ormonde

      Back atcha Mr O.

      I agree about bullies (can't live with 'em; can't shoot 'em) and perhaps I sounded a little flippant with my suggestion to simply move on.

      However, move on we must. Jones is outed - only the truly bigoted support him, politicians will continue to use him. And, as the cliche goes, which I was trying to avoid using; "better the devil we know...".

      The best I can draw from this latest Jonesian is that he has lost some of his supporters. Even some (not all) rusted on conservatives don't accept insults to the recently bereaved.

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    4. Peter Ormonde
      Peter Ormonde is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Farmer

      In reply to Dianna Arthur

      Waddya mean we can't shoot 'em??? Bloody nanny state restricting our god given right to bare arms ... or was that bear arms... big hairy things with claws.

      Either way I reckon that we should exercise our freedom of expression with terminal velocity when it comes to the likes of Alan... chaff bags spring to mind.I have lots of them.

      For evil - and he is exactly that - to flourish it is only necessary that good people do nothing.

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    5. Dianna Arthur

      Environmentalist

      In reply to Peter Ormonde

      People are doing something - Jones IS being soundly condemned, but the art is knowing when to stop. Jones simply doesn't need the oxygen and was canny enough to buy into his radio company, which is a kind of life support system for bullies - power.

      Something people can do (apart from shooting the coward, because that's what all bullies are at heart) is taking note of anyone who continues to appear on his little radio show - out them as well.

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  8. William Bruce

    Artist

    I honestly can't believe all this puritanical frogsh*t CHAT....
    It was obviously just a joke about Gillard's Lying ....(and it was "in club" as blokes say..and I ALSO thought it was funny, despite the bad taste...he was being facetious..GET OVER IT!

    The world has serious problems so called "academics" chat about this!!

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    1. William Bruce

      Artist

      In reply to Sarah Joseph

      No I skimmed it and saw IMMEDIATELY that you were being so foolishly judgemental & taking it so seriously as Commandant of "The Joke police"......

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    2. William Bruce

      Artist

      In reply to William Bruce

      And I just thought, also really badly persecuting Jones for his opinions..."A Human rights" porff. eehh

      Isn't having opinions a human right?

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    3. Sarah Joseph
      Sarah Joseph is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Director, Castan Centre for Human Rights Law at Monash University

      In reply to William Bruce

      Yes. This is my opinion. Opinions can include vehemently disagreeing with someone, as Alan Jones does all the time. He is hardly shy of bellowing his opinion, and shutting people down who he disagrees with.

      There is no human rights not to be criticised, even criticised heavily. Even for a (very sick) "joke".

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    4. William Bruce

      Artist

      In reply to Sarah Joseph

      Sarah Joseph say's re. AJ ...."....many people who lament his shtick, a tiresome combination of hate, misogyny and misinformation."

      ...But Sarah you are not "disagreeing" with him are you? ..Admit it!
      You are TRYING to demonise him....and do it with your own opinions & predjudices ...hiding behind the old "many people think..."
      .... A classic POLITICAL "smear" routine .....hardly very "Academic" in my view. Your piece reflects on you not Jones.

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    5. William Bruce

      Artist

      In reply to Sarah Joseph

      And I just read it a bit more....(all I could take...)...& even more personally nasty stuff...Sample here below:-

      "It would be a more ignominious fate for Jones to continue his slide in the ratings into ludicrous irrelevance, shouting into the void, rather than to be made a martyr by being “hounded” off the air while his ratings remain high. Let him self-destruct....."

      And you accuse him of "hate"......

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    6. William Bruce

      Artist

      In reply to Sarah Joseph

      Yeah links to "OPINION" peddled as fact....not fact...Hardly academic.

      You are still playing the man & not the ball and it reflects on your apparent desperation to "write him off" as a person.
      Why don't you criticise a particular view or a statement?
      You are using this Joke to demonise him and I think this is very wrong.
      Nobody is perfect!

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    7. William Bruce

      Artist

      In reply to Sarah Joseph

      Seems Sarah Joseph excuse is she say's AJ said a BAD thing like - "A bit like being put in a chaff bag and chucked out to sea"

      Seem she missed the metaphor...which was about her being rejected as a political leader.

      Or perhaps she didn't and is deliberately misinterpreting it to demonise him?

      Hardly very broad minded for a "Academic".

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    8. William Bruce

      Artist

      In reply to William Bruce

      Seems Sarah Joseph's excuse is she say's AJ said a BAD thing like - "A bit like being put in a chaff bag and chucked out to sea"

      Seems she missed the metaphor...which was about Gillard being rejected as a political leader.

      Or perhaps she didn't and is deliberately misinterpreting this to demonise him?

      Hardly very broad minded for a "Academic".

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    9. Sarah Joseph
      Sarah Joseph is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Director, Castan Centre for Human Rights Law at Monash University

      In reply to William Bruce

      By the way, William, I wasn't "excusing" myself, I was engaging in repartee. I don't believe I have to excuse myself.

      And I'd like to make clear that in saying "unbalanced" I mean "biased".

      Anyway, I doubt I'll be engaging in any more discussion here; the topic is quite exhausting. I am sorry you see me as such a poor academic, but that's life.

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  9. Michael Shand

    Software Tester

    This wasnt a defense of alan jones at all - misleading title = wasted time

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  10. Peter Sommerville

    Scientist & Technologist

    Thanks for this article Sarah. It raises some interesting issues.

    I am not a fan of Jones - but when I lived in Sydney or when I visit now I choose to listen to his drive show but not because I want to hear what he says. I am more interested in listening to his callers - what they have to say provides some understanding of the demographic that makes up his audience.

    In some ways he is similar to the USA's Rush Limbaugh, to whom I also listen when driving in the US. Limbaugh's rants are very…

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  11. John Zigar

    Engineer, researcher

    I’ve never listened to Alan Jones but I have heard of him. He usually pops up in the media when he says something ‘inappropriate’. That’s his daily bread. He makes outrages statements – that’s why he’s called a shock-jock – because he shocks people. Given that he attended a Liberal Party fundraiser, it can be assumed that he’d make an insensitive comment about Julia Gillard. In this case, it was about her father. My problem with his comment was that he obviously didn’t know Mr Gillard at all and…

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    1. William Bruce

      Artist

      In reply to Sarah Joseph

      Michael Shand
      Software Tester (logged in via email @gmail.com)
      notes:-
      "This wasnt a defense of alan jones at all - misleading title = wasted time".

      SARAH JOSEPH'S excuse is:- "In defence of ... his show's right to exist?"

      Well why didn't she head it so?

      Seems SARAH JOSEPH'S chat was fraudulent right from the onset....

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  12. William Bruce

    Artist

    Poor Sarah, seems you are hurting over this. Have a cup of tea...

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    1. Peter Ormonde
      Peter Ormonde is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Farmer

      In reply to Sarah Joseph

      Isn't it sad how - at least for some - public discussion and debate has degenerated into bullying, personal abuse and invective. It's what one does when one doesn't have facts to present - just opinions and feelings, suspicions and fears. It seems particularly focused on women, ethnic groups - folks who are considered soft targets.

      Jones and a few others legitimise and sanction this approach. It is their stock in trade. And it spreads like a fungus.And, after a while, folks forget what an argument actually consists of - that facts are irrelevant, that any opinion is the equal of another and that a repeated slur or allegation or insinuation becomes equally true and valid.

      It's not Jones' politics that are a menace - it's his methods and their effect on us all. We have seen this stuff before in history - and we know where it leads.

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    2. William Bruce

      Artist

      In reply to Sarah Joseph

      Sarah, I do not see you as a poor academic....but I do think you have said some unacademic things.....just as I do not see Jones as a poor person, I see he has said some "bitchie" & unkind things....even foolishly inflammatory things...we all have a lot more to do to improve "peace & understanding" & the worlds repressed (by both East AND WEST).
      See this article by Charles Waterstreet in SMH....and consider that it is often wise to re-question ones beliefs.
      Enjoy your tea.

      http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/society-and-culture/beneath-the-shell-jones-is-a-softie-20121006-275x7.html

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  13. Russell T

    IT Consultant

    I heard Phillip Adams have his say on this last week. Sad as it is, he predicts that in that time this will only strengthen his position and hold on the audience.I suspect he is right.

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  14. Rebecca Heazlewood

    logged in via Twitter

    Wow Sarah, I only feel sorry for one person after reading this article, and that is Glenn Beck. He is nothing like Alan Jones, you would know that if you knew anything about him. Firstly, Glenn would NEVER and I repeat NEVER say anything like Jones did about somebody's parent, because he's mother died when he was a teenager. Secondly he is nothing like Jones. Glenn cares about people, and he does respect them. He is not a 'racist hick' he just doesn't like Obama.

    Sarah, if you actually read this…

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  15. William Bruce

    Artist

    Last word, how many of us would be GENUINELY offended if someone said to us, that we "were such a disaster" or, "nit-wit" or "WHATEVER ELSE", that our father died of shame?
    AND, of course, we KNEW he died for some medical reason.

    In Parliament yesterday Julia was laying it on "SUPER-SIZED" THICK (not with just a trowel but a Bull-nosed shovel) ...."I was OFFENDED" about this & "I was OFFENDED" about that ...I was offended by THIS misogynist, that SEXIST.. I was OFFENDED by something else ....

    Seems more FALSENESS to me...
    Playing all this "sympathy & victim" stuff IN PUBLIC seems obviously to me "a diversion"... for the consumption for the great unwashed....

    Even if she was offended she ought be smart enough to appear to "take it in her stride" and get down to the business she is PAID to do.

    Politicians have been throwing insults is a 3000 year old business.......thats part of the job they are in.

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    1. William Bruce

      Artist

      In reply to William Bruce

      Also,
      I am offended that she has reneged on promises THAT COST ME MORE MONEY.......In business thats called cheating and FRAUD.
      I'm offended to see her "denying & accusing" Julian Assange...who will go down in history as one of the few great Australian....I'm offended about neglecting our indebtedness & waste and neglecting OUR military and allowing US bases here which, as I understand, WE will be paying for....
      I'm offended she "DID'NT" know about things at Slater & Gorden...I could go on for an hour....

      The Labor party ought wake up...her credit is shot . AND she is not smart enough to be our PM! Sorry but she has got to go....And in this regard Alan Jones is right in my view.

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    2. Peter Ormonde
      Peter Ormonde is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Farmer

      In reply to William Bruce

      William, you say "Politicians have been throwing insults is a 3000 year old business.......thats part of the job they are in."

      Not really. Sure tempers get frayed and animosity spills over but this near exclusive personalisation - the smearing of individuals and their character - is a relatively new phenomenon. It is American in origin I suspect, a country where the President - essentially an elected king - is required to have a character beyond reproach - or at least the appearance of one…

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    3. William Bruce

      Artist

      In reply to Peter Ormonde

      Bull....one knows character and trustworthiness from actions & inactions.
      Words & insults are worth nothing....in fact they only waste time.
      If your integrity and credibility is OBVIOUSLY shot you can't lead or expect others to respect you and perform with verve or honesty.

      Words are cheap....but Carbon tax is EXPENSIVE and completely wasteful & ineffective....if 100% of money was going into public equity in green power ok but it is NOT!! Who gets this money?
      C. Tax will seriously harm our…

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    4. Peter Ormonde
      Peter Ormonde is a Friend of The Conversation.

      Farmer

      In reply to William Bruce

      Ah yes Barnaby Joyce - right on the money .... the $100 Sunday Roast due to the carbon price.

      Now how do you reckon Barnaby is going to stop Australian farmers selling their properties to the highest bidder Bruce? As Sir Humphrey would say - " A courageous position" ... as evidenced by the overwhelming support he received from his coalition colleagues.

      As for the rest of your opinions regarding character and morality, like I suggest they are all derived from what you read or see on TV... all marketing.... firmly held, but not based on direct first hand knowledge.

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    5. William Bruce

      Artist

      In reply to Peter Ormonde

      You are obviously unaware it is illegal for foreigners to own land in many countries....one being China!

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    6. William Bruce

      Artist

      In reply to Peter Ormonde

      "As for the rest of your opinions...they are all derived from what you read or see on TV... all marketing" ...,...Mmm

      Reneging on firm promises PUBLICLY made "from her own mouth"...... is NOT spin or marketing....IT IS FACT you chose to ignore......time to get real.

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