NATIONAL AFFAIRS CORRESPONDENT FOR THE SYDNEY MORNING HERALD
“It is difficult not to believe that he is getting a dose of his own medicine” … Malcolm Turnbull, on Alan Jones. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen
ALAN JONES has been ”given a dose of his own medicine” with the online campaign that has stripped his station of sponsors, and is not the victim of ”cyberbullying” as he has claimed, the Coalition communication spokesman, Malcolm Turnbull, has said.
Mr Turnbull said new media has allowed ”thousands of Australians” to speak ”for themselves, unedited, unmediated”, and the consequences have been ”without precedent”.
In this case the effective response to Mr Jones was not regulation … but rather the use by thousands of people of the enhanced freedom afforded them by the social media
”The management of 2GB have announced his show will be run henceforth without any advertisements at all. For the first time Alan will have something in common with the ABC,” Mr Turnbull said last night in his Alfred Deakin lecture entitled Liberty in the Digital Age.
”Mr Jones has sought to lead ‘people’s revolts’ for many years. But this was indeed a popular revolt against vicious and destructive public discourse … It is difficult not to believe that he is getting a dose of his own medicine …
”Mr Jones has complained that he has been the victim of social media bullying, saying that if it happened anywhere else in society, this kind of bullying or harassment or intimidation or threatening conduct, the police would be called in …
”But Mr Jones believes his association with certain products will encourage people to buy them … If other people take the view that an association with Mr Jones will lead them not to buy those products, why are they not able to tell the advertiser of their view and encourage others to do the same?”
Mr Turnbull said the episode bolstered the case against more media regulation.
”In this case the effective response to Mr Jones was not regulation … but rather the use by thousands of people of the enhanced freedom afforded them by the social media,” he said.