WAToday reckons violence is okay when Twilight is involved

Nary a peep from I Am Not Cake in months, and it takes W.A. Today of all publications to rouse me to posting again.

I refer you to this clusterfuck of an article, headlined hilariously, Up to his neck in it: dad chokes girl over Twilight movie. Just a little light-hearted violence, don’t you know that anyone could be driven to it by Twilight?

As it turns out, Twilight has fuck-all to do with this domestic abuse case, except for happening to be the movie the two girls were watching when their father was sleeping. W.A. Today nevertheless could not resist the punny headline. Ha. Ha.

The story is actually that the father choked his eleven year old daughter until she couldn’t breathe, and then kicked and punched her. Oh, and also that his defense lawyer is using the “she asked for it” line, in the form of claiming the father “was receiving cheek”.

W.A. Today links to the full article in the Queensland Times, headlined Man chokes daughter over loud TV, which by contrast does not make light of the assault. The second article reports on the man’s assault of his ten year old daughter as well.

There is no excuse for the word choices and tone in the W.A. Today article. It’s written as a puff piece, hinging on engaging the reader’s sympathy with the father. The use of the informal, friendly “dad” rather than “father” or “man” as in the Queensland Times article, starting out with a vampire-movie pun as if the article is about something lighthearted, the gratuitous use of Twilight as link bait despite its irrelevancy – it all adds up to callous minimising of the abuse suffered by the two girls. There’s no excuse for this kind of piece, especially less than a week after White Ribbon Day.

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4 responses to “WAToday reckons violence is okay when Twilight is involved

  1. Pingback: a tour of the new media « a shiny new coin

  2. I have been noticing throwaway references in headlines just to guarantee the hits lately. It’s a disgusting habit they’re getting into, warping the story just to convince the advertisers online news works.

    On news.com.au yesterday three out of 5 top stories had the word “sex” or “orgasm” in the headline. I mean I realise sex sells, but they’re in the business of reporting news, not selling their site at the expense of accuracy.

    Great post.

  3. *jaw drops*

    That’s freakin’ horrible. Jeez they’ll do anything for page clicks these days won’t they? How awful.

  4. Hi Shinynewcoin,

    The only online (mainstream) newspaper that I’ve found that doesn’t do that is the New York Times.

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