So I Finally Snapped And Wrote To The Daily Telegraph….


In wake of the recent events in Sydney I found myself feeling that the media was actually doing a half-okay job of reporting the facts and trying to keep a lid on the hysteria that could essentially seen as being almost inevitable in circumstances as tense and terrifying as this.

And then, as they so often do, the infinitely ridiculous and sublimely awful Daily Telegraph, surprised no-one by being a bunch of colossal idiots and published what can only be described as quite possibly the absolute worst response to the situation.

Here is a screenshot from Twitter of the offending ‘Special Rushed Edition” of the Telegraph from today:

telegraph cover 15:12:14

And here is the letter which I just sent to them:

To Whom It May Concern,

As a news source, The Daily Telegraph, cops fair a bit of derision and hatred. You’re often the subject of scorn, outrage and the butt of a few jokes. However I’ve never really had a reason to truly question neither your actions as a newspaper nor the journalistic integrities of your staff of writers and editors.

Things have changed.

In fact as the back page of your 2pm Special Rush Edition for 15/12/2014 states: The instant we changed forever. I can only assume the ‘we’ you are referring to is yourselves.

Today has been a tumultuous and terrifying day. A day of unease and of worst nightmare scenarios and, despite the knifepoint situation we find ourselves balancing on, I have been rather impressed with the country and the media’s ability to remain relatively calm in the face of something that could have easily become mass hysteria.

And then for reasons that I cannot possibly comprehend, you – my faithful friends at the Telegraph – decided to forego your ability to use rational thought and instead descended to what might be the lowest form of journalism I have seen in this country.

A front page screaming a message that was literally the opposite of what was required from you as a newspaper and a conduit of information to the masses. A special edition newspaper that barked a headline so vitriolic and idiotic one could be forgiven for thinking that it had been planned, published and printed by anyone with half a brain.

You’ve come under fire for your evocative and outlandish front pages before. There was the time you literally told the voting population of Australian to vote someone out of Government. Or the time you photo-shopped the Russian President onto the front of a Tom Clancy novel, but this is something else entirely because not only is it stupid but it’s also incredibly dangerous.

Here we have a very real, very dangerous situation involving actual human lives unfolding in real-time as I type this, a situation in which every single person in any form of authority was begging for calm. For cool heads.

The Prime Minister. The Opposition Leader. The Treasurer. The NSW Police Commissioner. The Grand Mufti of Australia. I could name literally anyone holding a title in this country and I am 100% certain that they would have said the exact same thing: Please remain calm.

Everyone except the esteemed journalists and editors at The Daily Telegraph of course.

Not only was your ridiculous journalistic effort (although using that word “journalistic” is probably too much of a stretch) sending exactly the wrong kind of message, but it was adding fuel to very large and very precarious fire that has the potential to explode at any moment.

People’s lives are at stake and you decided, for whatever reason, to put sensationalism and sales (as this the only thing I can imagine you would be getting from such idiocy) ahead of them. You willingly made a decision to ignore the warnings and pleas and to actually jeopardize people’s lives.

Second to that, as if you needed another reason to see why this was such a terrible idea (although based on current evidence it’s difficult to gauge whether any of you possess the ability to use something like “reason”), not one single thing you wrote on the front page of that headline was true (except maybe the setting of the CBD, so well done there).

The identity of the man in question remains a mystery, however several credible sources have been reporting all day that he is not a member of the Islamic State. The flag in question has also been confirmed as not being the flag used by members of the Islamic State. Therefore to infer that this was the work of the IS on THE FRONT PAGE OF THE NEWSPAPER is perhaps some of the worst reporting I have ever had the unfortunate privilege of reading.

It’s irresponsible and it’s just flat-out wrong.

To put it simply you have failed in you duty to inform people, you have failed in your duty to report the facts and you have failed to behave in a manner that is in any way, shape or form ethical.

Well done.

Have a wonderful Christmas.

P.S I feel I should also share with you that as a result of this stupidity I have also written to The Australian Press Council to lodge a formal complaint about your dismal efforts today so that you may finally understand that your actions and have serious consequences.

Yours Sincerely,
Tom Reed


So. I’ll continue to pester them until something happens. Maybe I’ll just get taken away in a news van and never seen again. But there’s a line, and while the Telegraph repeatedly and wilful piss all over this line on a regular basis, this time they’ve crossed it in a way that is so staggeringly gobsmacking I can only hope it will make you want to do something like this.

Write your own and send to them at:
Or you can just forward mine over and over and over.

Stay informed. Stay safe. Stay tolerant.





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104 responses to “So I Finally Snapped And Wrote To The Daily Telegraph….

  1. Louisa

    Tom, Your reaction is what they want, it creates publicity for them. If you don’t like what they print, don’t read it. I personally only read the Herald because I think the journalism at the Telegraph is poor. I think you need to focus on the real issue here and not get caught up in minor side details – why was this man in our country? In my opinion, if you come to this country and break the law, you should be sent back to where you came from. There are so many needy and deserving refugees in this world, why are we persevering with people like him?

    • Really? Everyone? English and New Zealanders? For parking fines too? Speeding? Littering? Or robbery? Shoplifting pre-teens? Do their parents have to go too? Or just their mum? Does it change if they become citizens? Do they pay the fine first? Do they go to jail first and then get exported? Do they have to be found guilty first? I say that last one because it seems this guy hadn’t been found guilty of anything. And finally, Louisa, who decides whether a refugee is “deserving”? You? And what is your criteria? Do they have to be white? Christian? Cute? Or just really really grateful?

      • Chris Launder

        What nonsense Andrew , no-one has ever had an application for Citizenship or Asylum refused due to parking fines or shoplifting .
        This guy had SERIOUS charges against him , he was even a criminal before he left Iran and should never have had his application approved . Furthermore , going by his conduct and criminal history since he arrived , his Visa should have been revoked .

    • I totally disagree with you Louisa on two fronts, A) a complaint to the Press Council and to the newspaper is a good thing. It’s amazing what public opinion can do, and force an organisation to do, even one as big as News Ltd. B) When a country offers a person citizenship, that person has all the rights that other citizens have. That is the nature of citizenship, like it or not. We have a judicial system that all citizens are afforded when charged with a crime. There has a been a lot of talk about bail conditions and the like since this happened but even Nicholas Chowdry stated on Radio National with Waleed Ali that as far as he could determine, under the law, bail was right to be granted. I am totally disgusted by the Tele’s cover headlines (as you are it sounds like) and I support Tom’s decision to write to both the paper and the Press Council.

  2. Craig Armstrong

    There are some grammatical errors in your letter. You should have got someone to proofread it first. However I agree with your sentiment and argument. Very whole-heartedly.

  3. Jon

    Dear Rupert you seem to have a large influence on a country you abandoned a long time ago could you please leave us alone as I’m not annoying you.

  4. P.Hughes

    What about Phillip Hughes? Yes, he died in an accident. So what.

    I’ve seen his name in the paper every day for the last fortnight – Like seriously, move on. Media is a load of bull.

    We must write about something for days so that we get better insight – that we may or may not know about

  5. Have forwarded your letter on with the following preface:

    After your reprehensible efforts to make bank for yourselves on one of the most awful days we’ve experienced as a country in a very long time, I struggled to put into words exactly how upset your “2PM FEAR MONGERING CAPSLOCK CLUSTERF$#K” made me.

    Luckily, I stumbled across this letter that manages to do just that.

    I hope your team do have a wonderful holiday. That is, if you can peel yourselves away from the print button on whatever the next tragedy DT decides to opportunistically abuse might be – long enough to be a part of actual humanity.

  6. Victor

    The solution is simple. Stop buying Murdoch media products.

  7. Boycott

    Vote with your wallet, just don’t buy the paper….simple.

    • Algy

      Since the sales of the paper are only a small portion of their income, you would hurt them more by taking note of the companies who advertise with them and boycotting their goods and services.

  8. Don’t forget to send complaints to ABC’s Media Watch & the Media Watchdog (even though it’s fairly toothless at times).

  9. I, like some other commenters, agree with the sentiment. Certain media outlets reel out the bait and it’s important for us not to take it.

  10. marty

    In response. I lost interest when you baffled on for half a decade. Plain and simple, 2 innocent people died due to the pm not giving a care to make a phone call as per request. Shame on you Abbott.

    • Trav

      Really Marty? It was Abbott’s fault? Do you really think anyone even called him? So the guy could execute someone while he was on the phone? Reality check mate

  11. They haven’t had a cent , not a brass razoo , from moi in …oh ….roughly 6 years……Never even see them , perchance a glance when in the abyss of the “supermarkets ” of the world….but thats it….Nana , zilch… sayonara to journalistic drivel . Have a great Chrissy everyone.

  12. Dave

    mate, youre a knob. End of

  13. Brad

    I’m by no means a fan of mainstream media but I fail to see what the big issue is with his newspaper headline.
    Firstly I didn’t realise IS had a membership form that is required to join.
    We have seen many Australians go over there and fight.
    This guy is no different to them.
    Secondly in his demands which were posted in 4 videos (available to see on liveleak)
    He demanded he received an IS flag.
    He demanded the Australian Government acknowledge this is an attack by IS
    And he demanded a phone call with the PM.

    So given his demands, having a headline with the name the Australian PM calls the ISIS group is really not that big a deal.


  14. So errr a terrorist is actually killing people, but your angle is that the media is putting lives at risk? I dont think it was the media that were holding that shotgun. How is the that newspaper putting lives at risk?

    And the guy wants to represent IS. Do you have the right to speak on his behalf and give him a different identity?

  15. Enifes

    Wow, the longest ever!. Other things to worry about than news paper article.

  16. Andrew

    We all agree that the Telegraph is bigoted right wing trash. But your response is so very wrong – this guy was trying to represent the IS, so don’t deny that. Be tolerant but don’t be naive.

  17. mark....

    and here you are trying to get some publicity by thinking your a big shot and posting about it…. “wow your sooooo key board ninja”…. way to go…. your doing no more then thay are. but your trying to spin it. .. stop trying to seek fame for being an arse

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