This post is prompted by a discussion recently with a journalist from the excellent ABC program Media Watch about the problems caused potentially by websites (specifically news-oriented sites) that allow users to comment on stories. At issue here, in particular, is the commentary (if one can call it that) to be found at Yahoo! news in Australia. The story went to air this week (“Not all things good in moderation“) An example not covered by Media Watch is the recent report of the arrest of a man in NSW alleged to have trafficked women for sex. The comments are revealing. One asserts “Thats why these young Thai and Philipino women come here for. They work in brothels while they await some old, dirty, fat, red neck Aussie man to marry them. You see them together everywhere, these girls are young enough to be there daughters or granddaughters. Its disgusting.”. While one reply corrects the poster, pointing out that the women had no choice, another is simply insulting “Aussie men marry Asian women because they are a much better alternative than bitter twisted hags like you”. None of the comments materially add to the debate except insofar as they reveal the … Click to read more
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