The Media, Entertainment & Arts Alliance (MEAA) has come out in defence of a Daily Mail reporter that was fired after she labelled Bachelor in Paradise contestant Florence Alexandra a "vapid c*nt" in an article.
The Daily Mail apologised for the incident on Monday, admitting the inclusion of the derogatory description was a "mistake", and fired the journalist who penned the piece, April Glover.
Glover originally wrote in her piece: “Florence initially rose to fame on Matty J’s season of The Bachelor, before unsuccessfully trying her luck at love again in Paradise.
“But most people who were educated at a high-school level know these vapid c*nts only go on the shows to find mediocre Instagram fame and make a living promoting teeth whiteners and unnecessary cosmetic procedures.”
The paragraph was removed but not before being called out by several Twitter users, including Florence, who is reportedly taking legal action.
The MEAA is urging the Daily Mail and other digital publishers to better support their staff, adding it is unfair to expect junior staff to bear all of the responsibility for errors that are the result of excessive workloads and cuts to sub-editing and other editorial checks and balances.
The board highlights a wider issue in digital publishing that is "symptomatic of the lack of resources and absence of oversight experienced by young journalists in digital media".
MEAA media director Katelin McInerney says the mistake came after the reporter had been required to file five stories that morning.
According to reports, Daily Mail Australia staff are required to upload their stories onto the website without going through any copy-editing process.
“Errors like the one made by the Daily Mail Australia journalist are inevitable in an environment which places quantity of content above quality, and does not provide the extra layer of checking that comes from sub-editors,” she says.
“The errors that led to her sacking would have been picked up by sub-editor and never seen the light of day."
As publishers increasingly cut the sub-editing function from news rooms, McInerney says errors are being published due to inadequate quality control systems in place.
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