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The Australian sinks lower, but at least it’s up front.

August 29, 2012

The Australian newspaper has sacked its one and only science writer, Leigh Dayton. She tweeted yesterday:

Yes my job & I were made redundant Mon & I’m leaving The Oz 7/9. Thx for all the kind words!

Leigh is an experienced science writer, and must have found the going tough in the environment of the Murdoch flagship. Science has proved to be very inconvenient for The Oz. It has a track record as the country’s main print outlet for a whole menagerie of climate deniers. Deltoid’s Tim Lambert has brilliantly documented this in his The Australian’s War on Science series.

Looks like this is the final blow in the war. At least the paper is not pretending any more.

Update (30/08/2012): In the opposition Fairfax stable, The Sydney Morning Herald‘s science editor Deborah Smith, health editor Julie Robotham and health correspondent Mark Metherell have all taken voluntary redundancies, as has the Canberra Times‘ environment reporter Rossyln Beeby. They have been joined by a large number of other senior staff. This comes as a result of the Fairfax rescue plan to shed 1900 jobs.

Update (04/09/2012): Crikey puts this story into the context of the demise of science journalism worldwide.

One Comment
  1. Martin Lack permalink

    Please pass on my condolences to Leigh. The scientific reality of anthropogenic climate disruption really is inconvenient to those who do not want their “use it up and wear it out/business as usual” party disrupted. Long gone it seems are the days when The Australian might actually publish something sensible like this:
    No Science in Plimer’s Primer (a review of Plimer’s ghastly Heaven and Earth book) by Prof Michael Ashley – 9 May 2009.

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