Kyle Sandilands is such an inconsequential waste of space that I would normally be reluctant to expend a single millilitre of ink or pixel of web space on his unfortunate existence.
This week I made an exception, in the first instance because of the remarkably vile nature of his attack on one of our young female staff, a sexually threatening rant where he called her “a fat slag”, talked about her breasts and her hair, and issued the creepy pledge: “Watch your mouth girl, or I will hunt you down”. All this because she wrote a completely unremarkable news piece about the unpopularity of his new TV show.
I’ve decided to saddle up again today because there is an interesting broader lesson from the Sandilands episode. Not to put too fine a point on it, the long-overdue commercial destruction of Kyle Sandilands shows that it is no longer OK to be an abusive, hate-filled arsehole without facing serious consequences.
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It might be a military doctrine best remembered from the 2003 invasion of Iraq, but “shock and awe” could just as easily describe the latest warfare by TV and radio stations in the battle for ratings.
The Austereo network’s Kyle Sandilands and Jackie O have become the most notorious exponents of this tactic on the airwaves in the past few weeks.
But just as in war, even the best laid plans can backfire when they are unleased on the battlefield.
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