Why is the Australian media silent on Chk-Chk-Boom Girl?

May 26, 2009 — 8 Comments

I wrote on Sunday asking what Channel Nine’s role was in the Chk-Chk-Boom Girl scam. Chk-Chk-Boom Girl appeared on A Current Affair (ACA) last night, and you’ve probably never seen a softer interview.

Clare Werbeloff claimed on camera that she saw a camera, and ran up to it, and magically came up with a story about coming out of a tattoo parlor, and seeing a range of “wogs” shooting each other.

The premise was so thin as to be throw up worthy. Seriously: people just run up to cameras and make up an eyewitness statement for a shooting? I respect and understand that our fame obsessed society has changed norms, but there’s putting yourself in front of a camera, and then there’s giving a false account.

Now lets remember: 2 days before the mainstream media exposed the fraud on Sunday, a story surfaced on Mumbrella that pointed to other sites that said that Claire was working for a PR agency. That same PR agency worked at the same address as the PR agent she supposedly took on days after her video went viral. The original post included a photo that might have included Claire in a group PR agency photo. A later post clearly showed a photo of Claire, seemingly in the same location, waving money.

The reason I’m posting this today, and not after ACA yesterday is I’d wished that the ABC’s Media Watch might have picked it up. I’ve only just watched Media Watch now (Tuesday) and they didn’t. Indeed no one has outside of the original it’s a scam, she ran up to the camera spin.

But it’s bollocks.

The next question comes to News Ltd, who took two days to report the scam. Originally I questioned Nine’s role, but after watching the ACA report interview a News Ltd writer, more questions come up. Did News Ltd know about the scam days before? What was the deal with a News Ltd “blogger” being used in the ACA piece?

I have learned, maybe the hard way that the team at News.com.au is mostly smart, reasonable, and dare I say it: people just like us, so I make the suggestion with no prejudice. But the why still remains: they would have known Friday, it’s one thing I can credit the team at News Digital for: they’re very good at picking stuff up. So why Sunday, and more importantly why not the deeper questions.

And that applies to all Australian MSM outlets: why aren’t you asking the deep questions. Why aren’t you digging into her relationships with PR, and that goes for the ABC, and Media Watch as well.

One things for sure: the real story is getting a more “journalistic” treatment in the new media. What say you MSM to that.