I wasn't going to write about this today, or at all, because so much is being said already. But so much of what is being said is such hysterical rubbish that I figure I can't do much harm by adding my 2 cents worth.
Last week two Australian DJs played a prank call on a nurse. It wasn't a very funny prank call, but fairly typical of a trashy radio show. It wasn't the first prank call to be made by a radio station, and unfortunately it won't be the last. It will however be remembered not for its humour, or lack of, nor for the terrible English accents of the two DJs, but for the suicide of the nurse who picked up the phone.
The poor woman according to her brother 'died of shame'. It is incredibly sad. Sad for her and her family first and foremost. Sad for her colleagues, for the royals who were the actual butt of the joke and sad for the people who made that call.
It appears we're not allowed to say that, but something very important is forgotten in all the hysterical reporting in the press and on the social networks. Those DJs didn't decide to make that call. At the very least they were given permission to make the call. They didn't decide to broadcast that call. That decision was made by someone above them. People forget that radio shows, like TV programmes are made by whole teams including the DJs.
The responsibility that these two presenters must feel for their victim's reaction must be enormous. They don't need Twitter to tell them they have blood on their hands. They don't need the Daily Mail to rake through their pasts and find other examples of controversy they have caused. It must not be forgotten that this is what they were paid to do. It is sad that people are paid to act like utter twats with no thought for the consequences of their actions, but like the readers of sleb trash and tabloids must take some responsibilty for the crap they demand from the papers, so must each of us who listened to that prank call on youtube, or linked from newspapers such as the Daily Mail.
The society we live in likes to be shocked. Which is why it was thought that this call would be funny. A prank, involving the royals. The dollar signs must have been spinning before the eyes of the people in charge at that radio station. And the DJs will have got a pat on the back.
It backfired of course, tragically, but I think it is time to calm down and allow the victim's family friends and colleagues to mourn, come to terms with what has happened and eventually, possibly, to forgive. It is actually disrespectful to the memory of a woman who was unable to forgive herself for the rest of the world to be baying for blood and hounding the DJs into hiding and put them on the verge of a breakdown. I believe that they will blame themselves for many years to come. Perhaps for the rest of their lives. It is our responsibilty to back off, before even more harm is done.