ABC 7.30 Weds 9th May, 2012


Natalie will be sharing her story and talking about PartnerSPEAK tomorrow night on ABC1 (nationally) or on

Program will focus on research by Dr Gomathi and Raj Sitharthan about how people accessing pornography can become desensitised to images they are viewing and their behaviour about what type of pornography they access can escalate leading up to viewing images of child abuse; child pornography.

I’ve attached a photo of the ABC television crew setting up in my lounge-room, last week.


The pornography article only got about 8 minutes, interviewed 5 people and was incredibly rushed but, hopefully, some people affected will have seen it and this can be part of small steps towards having some dialogue…


Feedback to ABC re 7.30 program:

Dear ####,

Thank you for facilitating the Twitter side of things in regards to the 7.30 program on pornography last week. Thanks for communicating with us throughout the day and for checking in with us how our experience was.

The conversation on Twitter was mixed. Some of it, especially in the first 1.5 hours, involved what seemed to be people being deliberately controversial or provocative and a few personal (and, at times, irrelevant) attacks. As the conversation developed, there were more thoughtful (and passionate) comments from people who feel strongly about various perspectives and there was some useful debate, I felt. I’m glad that I decided to stay on Twitter for a while longer as the initial, deliberate ‘baiting’ seemed to calm down after some time.

I do believe that by reducing the program, that aired, to such scant and select comments, from each of the commentators, that the furore on Twitter could have been predicted. I think I am realistic in understanding that time is of essence and that time creates massive limitations for prime time television programs and there was no way that this program could ever have been an in-depth analysis of the issues associated with addiction, desensitisation and escalation. I don’t think the program did the issues, the interviewees or the ABC justice. Consistent feedback I’ve received from my all networks is that the program seemed incredibly rushed and superficial. From my perspective, brief quotes, with minimal context, provided a fertile environment for the direction that the Twitter conversation took. It seems that it was a bit of a missed opportunity; there was rich content resourced by the journalists and its a shame that the program couldn’t have delved just a little deeper and had it done this it had the potential to be a significant and important story.

From my personal perspective, and for my aims for PartnerSPEAK, the program did create awareness of the support forum and we have been able to provide support to women who have come to the forum stating, ‘I saw you on tv.’ In common with ###, I am pleased that the work I am doing was brought into the public eye for a moment and that PartnerSPEAK has been able to support more women, who are in crisis, because of issues pertaining to their partners’ involvement in child pornography. On a deeper level, and from a longer term perspective in terms of what was achieved compared to what could have been achieved, I am disappointed about the potential that was missed to set the scene for critical, public dialogue about the real impact of pornography.

Though I do wish for more in terms of what was included on the program, I do want to say that it has been an absolute pleasure to work with everyone involved in developing the program. Since PartnerSPEAK has been launched, I have come into contact with a number of media representatives from various publications and have had mixed experiences. ####, #### and you have been very professional and approachable about how you have communicated with me as the program was developed, and aired, and I have appreciated, very much, being treated so professionally and respectfully and for this professional approach I wish to acknowledge and thank you all. The crew who came to my house, and recorded my interview, also presented with utmost professionalism and respect in all their interactions with me which I also appreciate.

Thank-you to the 7.30 team for deciding to pursue this topic and for being brave enough to air something that criticized and questioned the impact of a very powerful and wealthy industry. Perhaps, and I hope, that at some stage it might be considered worthwhile to question and address the real impact in a little more depth on another program or in some other way.

Thanks to Anne-Frances, Raj and Jason for engaging in the conversation after the show.

Please do not hesitate to contact me should I be able to provide you with any additional feedback or if you want clarification on anything that I have said.

Kind regards,