democratic media please - real democracy requires the end of the for-profit media-advertising system

media response to supreme court appeal

published

there were corporate newspaper and television people at both the day of the trial and at the judgement (the quasi-corporate/public australian broadcasting corporation was there too).

none of the television news people ran a story, perhaps partially because i don’t talk to corporate media, as i informed them all (and as those that reported were good enough to report).

(i find it quite funny that i am happy that they included my reason for making no comment, while the journalists probably liked putting that in as to them it makes me sound like some kind of lunatic, very funny.)

most of the coverage was online, only a few of the print media stories actually appeared in the print editions.

abc news radio and radio national mentioned the decision on judgement day i was told.

i was often referred to as a graffiti/street artist/vandal, i guess what i did could be called graffiti using a very broad definition, but it’s a little misleading — while there are undeniable similarities (application of paint in public, judged illegal, young(ish) male perpetrator, etc.), to conflate my actions with modern graffiti culture is to miss the most important elements of my actions, as they are the elements that properly and clearly differentiate the two.

if i’m a graffiti artist for using paint to cover something undesirable then the courts are forcing convicted graffiti artists out on the street to do more graffiti every time they give them community service jobs of using paint to cover over other graffiti,€“ the herald sun should run that bombshell on the front page, i’m already mildly outraged.

it was repeatedly incorrectly reported that i am a university student (despite that being an easy fact to check), which fits the common depiction of the naive-idealistic-idiot-student-activist with his underdeveloped head all full of fanciful crap taught to him by the commy-lefty-flapper-mouths down at the university.

even one of my university lecturers had a similar attitude, when talking about gavrilo princip, the serbian yugoslav nationalist student who assasinated franz ferdinand as a member of the black hand (helping to instigate world war one), he said something like ‘it’s always students who do these crazy types of things’, despite the fact that it is not and he is supposed to be educating students against such stupid, reductive generalisations.

for the record, my opinions are not the result of any formal education (unless maths/science analytical skills coupled with my selection of good christian ethics are what equipped me with the tools to get ‘radical’ and hate bone-crushing capitalism) — my opinions and method of action were set well before any formal study of politics/philosophy — it’s my personal opinion that universities do more to discourage/moderate peaceful ‘radical’ resistance to capitalism than to encourage it.

anyway,

here’s a round up of the coverage:

23rd of august, herald sun:

http://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/true-crime-scene/supreme-court-fight-to-stop-anti-advert-crusader-kyle-magee-wiping-out-city-billboards/story-fnat7jnn-1226456122210

(for some reason this link brings up a pay-wall to the article, but if you just non-brand-specific-search-engine it, you can click through to see the full article without paying, also a lovely picture of robert clark supposedly/apparently being worried about corporate billboards)

kind of a deranged article in the way it seems to be for me sometimes (eg. calling me an anti-advertising crusader and casting me as david in a david and goliath battle) while against me also (eg. vandal this, vandal that).

i noticed mark dunn, the author of this article, who was at the trial i believe, did not write the herald sun article about the decision, probably just coincidence, but it could be that the heralds editorial team decided to go with someone who would save all dramatic descriptions for the purpose of denigrating my character (why would you bump the guy who had done the last story, already knew the incorrect details and attended the trial?).

factual mistakes:

said i’m 29 and from collingwood, i’m 28 and not from collingwood.

says i’m a monash university student, haven’t been for about 2 years, only completed 6 months worth of subjects in my time there.

says i was convicted of causing $340 dollars damage, it was actually only $40 dollars, and even that is probably too high as the ad would have been cleaned by already employed cleaners during their normal shifts.

says at the time of whitewashing i was on bail for at least one other offence, i was not, all charges previous had been dealt with at the time of the ‘offence’ in february 2010.

11th of september, herald sun:

http://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/national/graffiti-artist-loses-vandalism-appeal/story-fndo3ewo-1226471780507

somewhat less dramatic than the heralds initial coverage, although the article is kicked off with some dramatised lies that cast me in a bad light.

factual mistakes:

i was not convicted for ‘splashing a bucket of paint’ over an ad, i used a paint brush and was quite neat and tidy, even posting a wet paint sign so as not to spoil the clothes of my fellow citizens.

i’m not 29 yet and i’m not from collingwood.

they didn’t say i was a university student this time as i told the herald sun guy that was there trial day (mark dunn i think) that i was not a university student when he asked while walking past in the court hallway during lunch break (i guess answering simple factual questions like that with the shake of my head does not violate my ‘does not talk to corporate media’ code, or perhaps i’m just human so i find it hard to ignore people).

12th of september, the age:

http://www.theage.com.au/victoria/street-artist-cops-a-spray-as-he-loses-vandalism-appeal-20120911-25qn7.html

shit pun headline, again with the graffiti culture imagery, i’ve never used a fucking spray can.

the cream of the corporate media scum achieved the highest level of accuracy and a fairly complete picture of the occurences (you still suck for advertising and your business section is actually from hell).

they actually ran this story in the print edition directly underneath an article (unseparated by a border, implying direct connection) about the possible installation of security cameras in hosier lane to protect the graffiti art of the international-acclaimed-famous from the scrawl of the local gutter-rats.

this again reflected the common misconception of my activities as some part of graffiti culture.

the awful photo they used is from a magistrates hearing a long time ago, i guess 6 years ago at least, i remember them taking those photos and asking me for comment, which i didn’t give — they didn’t run a story back then.

factual mistakes:

not a university student

11th of september, ABC online:

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2012-09-11/graffiti-artist-loses-freedom-of-expression-appeal/4254556?section=vic

the advertising-free public broadcaster reports much like corporate media — denunciatory overtones regarding my actions and minimal description of what i am actually trying to express and why.

factual mistakes:

(well this is more of a conceptual mistake, but a big fucking mistake none the less) it called corporate advertising ‘public advertising’, it is in public space, yes, but it is not by the public or for the benefit of the public, it is owned and produced by profit-driven companies with the sole intention of extracting cash from the public — something being prefixed ‘public’ implies that it is for the benefit of the public (take public schools, public libraries, public parks, public broadcasters like the a.b.c. for example), corporate advertising in public space is for the direct opposite of the benefit of the public.

i’m not a university student from collingwood.

i didn’t say ‘corporate media presence’€ exactly, when she asked me a question something like ‘why do you believe it is in the public interest to white-out advertisements?’ i chuckled a little (at her tone mainly, but also at the question) then told her ‘i’m not going to speak to you while the corporate media is around’ as the 3AW radio guy was next to her.

(end of factual mistakes) sarah farnsworth, the a.b.c. reporter, had given me her card earlier in the court-room, so when i declined to comment she told me to contact her if i wanted to talk, i texted her saying i would promptly answer any questions she emailed me, but she didn’t take me up on that, she said in her text reply to let her know if i wanted to speak on camera, but i don’t particularly enjoy being filmed and am not totally trusting of even the a.b.c. to not make me look like more of a dick than i am.

i guess i don’t mind so much if the media makes me out to be a dick, but if that is what they are going to try and do, they’re cunts, so why would i talk to them and give them material for their shit purpose? — why would you talk to anyone who had the intention of manipulating your interaction to insult you? media or not, i only ever want to answer questions from people who are making a genuine effort to understand me.

even though i am not totally psyched by the set-up of the a.b.c. (due to the corporate mainstream suck-along effect and a management increasingly corporate in flavour), it is publically-funded and corporate-advertisement free, so as i want to get my message out and they are the best of a bad lot, they have either satisfied or defined my minimum requirements (couldn’t tell you which).

11th of september, the australian:

http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/nation/graffiti-artist-loses-freeedom-of-expression-fight-in-vandalism-appeal/story-e6frg6nf-1226471684650

an article hostile to the very existence of a human rights charter, heartening, as the australian always is.

factual mistakes:

none as far as i know — it was good of justice kyrou to include in his decision that ludicrous flood-gate, thin-end-of-the-wedge implication that anyone could go around killing and raping people and successfully claim freedom of expression as a defence if he allowed our case to succeed — that saved the australian having to do the sensationalising, and gave the sensationalising a more authoritative feel.

11th of september, yahoo 7 news:

http://au.news.yahoo.com/entertainment/a/-/entertainment/14817373/graffiti-artist-loses-freedom-of-expression-appeal/

they just bought the story off the a.b.c. it seems, don’t know why they didn’t just rewrite the report by copying the incorrect details from the other reports like everyone else seemed to do.

11th of september, 3AW blog:

http://www.3aw.com.au/blogs/breaking-news-blog/vandal-fails-in-bid-for-freedom-of-expression/20120911-25pk3.html

factual mistakes:

not 29, not from collingwood.