Bad journalism shame file #1

In what might be the worst piece of Australian journalism of 2011, columnist Paul Sheehan argues that the New Zealand All Blacks should be banned from doing the haka. (It should be mentioned that the lead-in headline on the front page of The Age website was “Haka no longer has a place in world sport”, lest those reading the direct link I’ve posted are unaware of the bold statement this article attempts to substantiate.) How did this article even make it past the editor’s desk at the Sydney Morning Herald/The Age? Either journalistic standards have dropped reeeeally low or the SMH/The Age are desperate for web hits. (I’m trying to decide which explanation is less depressing.)

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3 responses to “Bad journalism shame file #1”

  1. Porfirio says :

    I drop a leave a response each time I appreciate a post on a blog or I have something to contribute to the conversation. Usually it is triggered by the fire communicated in the post I browsed. And after this post Bad journalism shame file #1 | Sheeple Liberator. I was actually excited enough to create a thought 🙂 I actually do have a couple of questions for you if you usually do not mind. Is it only me or does it appear like a few of the remarks look like written by brain dead folks? 😛 And, if you are writing at additional sites, I would like to follow you. Could you make a list every one of all your social sites like your Facebook page, twitter feed, or linkedin profile?

  2. mariposa says :

    The Haka is my favourite part, and the same for everyone else I know! Things like the Haka and NZ’s national anthem with it’s intergration of both cultures gives me the strongest admiration and respect for NZ. They show how it should be done….
    Good on you for shaming and naming this one!

    • Sheeple Liberator says :

      I agree. It’s great that NZ still displays this proud cultural tradition. Especially in world sport, which is becoming more and more generic.

      The journalist is entitled to his opinion, but I posted it as an example of bad journalism because the whole article is a rambling mess that fails to make a proper argument (ok if you’re a random blogger, not ok if you’re a senior professional journalist writing for the biggest newspapers in the country) and it’s woefully under-researched (either that or the author couldn’t be bothered demonstrating that he knows anything about the origins and meaning of the haka). There are parts of it which are borderline racist and the way the author tries to connect this issue with such an emotional topic like rape is cheap. You can’t publish bold headlines that you know will get a lot of hits and fire up all the Aussies and Kiwis and back it up with this kind of rubbish. Pretty shocking for a so-called professional and for the the so-called credible newspapers of Australia.

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