Chris Smith’s asylum seeker quiz breaches radio code

Australia’s media watchdog has found that 2GB breached the Commercial Radio Code of Practice after presenter Chris Smith held a talk back quiz inviting listeners to guess how many asylum seekers were killed in the Christmas Island boat disaster.

The broadcast was first highlighted by the ABC’s Media Watch in February.

According to today’s report from  the Australian Communications and Media Authority, Macquarie Radio Network acknowledged the quiz was “offensive, in very bad taste, and that it should not have been broadcast”.

The competition, “Smithy’s Mystery” offered the winner a Rick Stein DVD, movie tickets and books.   

ACMA said it was the first breach of its type by ACMA. Chairman Chris Chapman said: “In those circumstances, the ACMA does not propose to take further formal action.”

The transcript – via Media Watch

Chris Smith: How many asylum seekers killed in the December tragedy will be buried in Sydney this week? Jason, good afternoon.

Jason: G’day mate, was it nine?

Chris Smith: It was not. Geoff.

Geoff: 30

Chris Smith: No….David?

David: 16?

Chris Smith: No. Valerie?

Valerie: 12

Chris Smith: TWELVE IS SPOT ON, VALERIE!! You’ve got Rick Stein’s DVD, you’ve got movie passes to True Grit and the book from Kim Scott. Well done to you!

Valerie: Fantastic, thank you very much.


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