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Royal hoax radio presenters off air after nurse found dead


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Makes me angry and sick thinking this prank came from my country. I swear our radio presenters are all in some way 'thick' in the head. Twitter is going off right now.

0 ( +10 / -10 )

For every action there's a reaction and in this case it's led to two children losing their mother before Christmas. Whilst clearly this was intended to be a prank it's gone horribly wrong and people should understand that their are consequences.

An apology on their Facebook page, a page that has subsequently been closed, isn't remotely good enough.

RIP Jacintha, you didn't deserve this to happen to you.

To those involved in orchestrating this 'prank', may the consequences stay with you forever.

1 ( +9 / -8 )

It's also worth noting that the pressure and attention from all the british media about it wouldn't have helped at all. They sure go bonkers over royalty over there.

-1 ( +8 / -9 )

It seems that this radio station has at least two other miserable stunts to it's credit, one involving berating a 14 y/o girl into divulging information about her sex life on the air and other stunts where the down-and-out of society are mocked. Maybe it should follow "News of the World" into oblivion. It's obvously a rotten bunch and we all know that a fish rots from the head. Yeah, it does give Oz a bad reputation. I thought only Americans could be this crude. But then I consider Howard Stern an embarassment too....

2 ( +8 / -6 )

Given what's been happening in the media recently in the UK with the phone tapping and the Leveson report it's hardly surprising that this got the attention.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

station milked the publicity as the “biggest royal prank ever.”

I have just signed a petition against 2Day FM and these prankers. They are a scum of society. The reality is that there is always a demand for cheap tabloid media like this.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

450 Tweets per hour... http://www.twazzup.com/?q=from:2dayfmsydney+OR+2dayfmsydney

3 ( +3 / -0 )

This is just so wrong!! Stupid idiot fools at that radio station thinking of "new and better ways" to improve their ratings!

1 ( +6 / -5 )

Shocking that a prank has resulted in someone taking their life. However people should leave it to the station and authorities to deal with the 2 presenters. Don't let this escalate to the point where they themselves commit suicide from the pressure.

Also before the facebook page taking down I was sickened by some of the posts on there. Mainly the people who posted so many hateful comments for the station and presenters on a picture that was posted by the station about a young boy who was murdered. That was uncalled for and showed a total lack of respect to that boy and his family, which I found disgusting.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

However people should leave it to the station and authorities to deal with the 2 presenters. Don't let this escalate to the point where they themselves commit suicide from the pressure.

Agreed. It's also worth remembering that it wasn't just the two DJs involved. They would have producers and they would also have to follow a set of rules/checklist with the station. At least one, if not more, signed off on this and they are equally culpable. If they didn't have the rules and regulations in place then I'd fully expect the CEO to be gone by Monday.

They all deserve to live with the consequences of their action. They don't, however, deserve to die for them.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Wait a sec. What exactly is the relationship between the prank and the nurse's death? Did the radio presenters do something that caused the nurse undue embarrassment or humiliation? From what I've read up above, it would appear she simply answered the phone then passed it to another nurse. Is there more to the story than just this?

People here are saying the prank "resulted in someone taking their life," but according to the article above, the police have said the death was unexplained and the family has made no comment publicly.

So why is her death so definitively being attributed to what seems to be a simple prank? If the nurse faced disciplinary actions from superiors at the hospital for passing the phone along to the charge nurse, or the royal family came down on the hospital for the nurse passing the phone along to the charge nurse, then it's the stress resultant from these two possiblities that would more likely, IMO, push someone to something so harsh as suicide than a simple prank phone call.

And we're talking about a potential suicide here. If it was indeed suicide, laying it all at the feet of radio presenters ignores the fact that there was likely a lot more going on in this woman's mind than a prank phone call when she decided to end her life.

9 ( +15 / -6 )

Charles joked about the incident, saying to reporters asking him about Kate’s condition on Thursday: “How do you know I’m not a radio station?”

Because if you were a radio station you'd make sense and be worth listening to?

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

People, can we save the moral preening please?

Trash radio stations are supposed to do this kind of thing. They have to entertain morons and create publicity. Seriously, station managers around Australia, the US and the UK are kicking themselves that their station isnt in the papers today.

Did the station force this woman to commit suicide? Absolutely not. In fact, if this nurse had have been Australian, she would have become a bit of a celebrity herself.

-5 ( +8 / -13 )

Pranks on even the smalles scale can go horribly wrong, so imagine on a scale like this? Well, I guess we don't have to imagine, do we, and I predict it'll get worse (with calls for these guys' heads). It's just a shame some people don't think before they try and pull a prank off -- especially one that will obviously make such big headlines.

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

Wow, so sad, really sad. Did this woman take her life because she somehow felt responsible, if so, that makes the situation that much more tragic. It's not her fault she was duped by these idiots. I hope these people realize the lives they ruined. When they sleep at night, I hope it weighs deeply in there conscious for the rest of their lives. Can these people face harassment charges?

2 ( +4 / -2 )

So getting a 14-year-old to talk about sex on the air was no problem, but getting a nurse to mention 'retching' in connection with someone we all know has morning sickness, is a heinous crime? If this poor nurse committed suicide because of the phone incident, I say the blame lies more with the reaction in the UK than with the Aussie prank. Maybe the nurse had other problems, maybe this was the straw that pushed her over.

Either way, a family has lost a loved one they needn't have lost. RIP.

6 ( +13 / -7 )

This is a most unfortunate incident. I do not think the nurse should have been blamed at all in the first place. The phone call got through the switchboard. It should have been screened before it got to her.

What would you have said if you had been in her position? Imagine a headline like, "Nurse tells Queen to get lost."

Yet, the radio presenters also are suffering. They had no idea their gag would even succeed, and then even less idea that it would end so tragically.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Is it just me or there is something much bigger going on behind this awkward story? Ok, this prank was of bad taste, (as it is the case with most of the pranks), but committing suicide after replying "Oh yes, just hold on, Ma’am" just does not seem right.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

The nurse answered the phone as there was no-one on reception. All she did was pass the caller on to the ward.

The consequences of this call will have far, far reaching effects on that station as a business. http://www.skynews.com.au/national/article.aspx?id=824355

2 ( +2 / -0 )

@ gaijintraveller Jacintha Saldanha the nurse who was at the switchboard and put the call through is the nurse who has died. It may well have been that English was not her first language and she would not have distinguished the phony accents. Since family members routinely call hospitals to be put through to nursing stations and Her Majesty is family to the Duchess of Cambridge, it could also be that the switchboard nurse perceived the call to be routine. Royal--but routine.

Knowing that you have been duped is one thing. Perhaps in time you can laugh it off. But to be duped and humiliated before the entire world is something else entirely. Also, we do not know what other factors may have been at play in her life to cause her to end her life--if that is what she did.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Here is a link to the actual prank call: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lyAkJReaHWs

2 ( +3 / -1 )

im sure the Hospital blamed her too heavy for her ,she cant hold on longer

2 ( +3 / -1 )

It will be interesting to see what the Australian Communication authorities will do as well as the Scotland yard since in a BBC article, it mentioned that the Australian broadcaster may have broken the law. An illegal act leading to death is usually grounds for a murder charge.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

@Cleo Exactly. The media feeding frenzy which followed this stupid prank is detestable. It's probable that this wouldn't have happened if the media hasn't humiliated her in public. I can take being duped by a silly prank, but I wouldn't like to see it plastered all over the national press. This seems to infect the UK more than most countries with foul creatures like Murdoch setting the bar ever lower - the rest follow suit.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Dr Peter Carter, general secretary of the Royal College of Nursing, said: “It is deeply saddening that a simple human error due to a cruel hoax could lead to the death of a dedicated and caring member of the nursing profession.”

The nurse who answered the phone didn't commit any error at all. She merely passed the call on to another nurse. And, in all honesty, was this really a "cruel" hoax? Stupid, yes, but obviously not done with any malicious intent. And even if the nurse involved was severely embarrassed, suicide is not the reaction of a rational person. If you asked any mother of right mind, "would you take your own life in this situation?" the answer would surely be "no".

8 ( +8 / -0 )

What a disgrace. What a sad, sad thing to come of people setting somebody up for public humiliation and extreme embarrasment for the sake of a cheap laugh. It's not funny, it was never funny, and now it has resulted in death.

What a deeply insensitive and callous society we have become if we can't see how wrong it is to do something like this to an unsuspecting and innocent person.


-1 ( +4 / -5 )

Billyshears, it certainly was cruel, the presenters showed no regard for the consequences to hospital staff. The irony is that being rather more sensitive to the pressures of public embarrassment than the radio station, the hospital took no action against the nurse. Instead they offered support.

That said, I dont think anyone could reasonably have predicted the nurse would take her own life as a result of this stupid act. The presenters and the radio station will have to live with the fact that some people aren't seeking fame and are simply ill-equipped to deal with the court of global media.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

"... the hospital took no action against the nurse. Instead, they offered support."

Well, that's the hospital's story. Nobody around to contradict it....

0 ( +3 / -3 )

"Well, that's the hospital's story. Nobody around to contradict it"

If the hospital is lying the nurses friends, family and colleagues will quickly point it out.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Can't blame the DJs for everything, but then again I agree with Tamarama. It was public humiliation. The DJs should know they can't control every outcome with certainty.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

It's all fun and games until.................

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

If only one person is laughing, it's not humour, it's ridicule.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )


If the hospital is lying the nurses friends, family and colleagues will quickly point it out.

True, if they knew about it. But how about this for a scenario:

Telephone call from the boss:

"You worthless piece of s**t. You've single-handedly ruined the hospital's reputation. Why don't you just f*** off and kill yourself?"

I'm not suggesting this was the case, not for a minute. But there are possibilities we should consider....

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I don't understand why she killed herself for this though - all she did was put the call through to someone else, who divulged the details. She wasn't a receptionist or anything like that, so she wouldn't have had training on screening calls. Not that I'm making light of her death - the exact opposite, I think it's a horrible thing to have happened, but just seems so "harsh" to kill yourself for putting a call through. It's a 1 second decision that cost her life....I just can't get over that.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Horrible stunt gone wrong, the 2 DJs should be sacked or at least suspended without pay for 1yr. I suspect she was reprimanded severely by her boss or someone at the hospital.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Lucabrasi, "there are possibilities we should consider".

We could speculate space aliens talked her into it but the available evidence indicates the nurse was unwittingly involved in a cruel prank, she has been exposed to the world as gullible and rather than punish her the hospital offered support. No-ones contradicted the hospital's statement.

The event is sad enough. There's no need to juice it up with a conspiracy theory.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Kachan, from what i read and heard here is Aust the station cleared it with their lawyers before it went to air and from what I have gathered there was no offence committed.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

An illegal act leading to death is usually grounds for a murder charge.

I'm no lawyer - however I think you'd really struggle to convict these 2 on murder charges. It is doubtful they expected to get through past the (now sadly deceased) staff let alone intentionally kill her.

Having said that - they deserve to lose their jobs as does the producer of their grubby show. Nothing surprises me though - we are talking about Australian commercial radio, which is basically aimed at those who have an IQ of 60 or under.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

I listened to the link Sensato kindly posted above.

First off, the "joke" wasn't even funny. Does anyone believe for a second that the Queen makes her own phone calls to check on visiting hours - with Prince Charles sitting right beside her no less? And even if a person were to get taken in at that stage .... would the Queen babble on about feeding her Corgies while on the phone, or use the phrase "belly bump". The idea for the hoax may have been funny, but the two clods doing the actually hoaxing were extremely unfunny and unprepared. I think even they couldn't believe someone was actually listening to them. I'd like to fault these two clowns, but they were so inept that its hard to believe anyone could have bought their story.


Well, that's the hospital's story. Nobody around to contradict it....

This is my take as well. Its not like any real confidential information was disclosed so I find it unlikely that the Royal family made a fuss about the call. Much more likely that the hospital was embarrassed and gave the nurse a stern dressing down, or her co-workers were embarrassed and made her feel like a loser (bullying) for transferring the call on. Regardless, a hospital serving people who value their privacy needs to have far better protocols in place to prevent stuff like this ever happening.

No matter what I think killing yourself over something this silly is a terrible over-reaction - particularly since the woman had children. What a waste.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

If nothing else good can come from this but for radio owners to insist responsible programming, then let's hope it happens.

World-over there are simply too many assh0les let loose with a mike.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I hope surviving family will sue the Southern Cross Austereo and 2day FM Sydney's two idiot DJs. They should know some peoples are taken serious about their job. Southern Cross Austereo that own 2 Day FM, the boss Rhys Holleran said 2DayFM presenters Mel Greig and Michael Christian did nothing wrong.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Seriously, how can it ever be regarded as a silly harmless joke to attempt to prank a sick, pregnant woman expecting her first child? What kind of humour is that? Those ridiculous 'shock jocks' have been getting away with too much for too long. Throw the book at 'em.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

For those of you who feel the need to defend the presenters and radio station, here's an article from the Sydney Morning Herald:


From that article: 2Day FM had organised "psychological counselling" and insisted the tragedy could never have been foreseen.

Southern Cross Austereo spokeswoman Sandy Kaye said Christian and Greig were being counselled by a psychologist – paid for by the company – but neither had undergone any other medical treatment.

She said the presenters were "being babysat" by Austereo staff in order to be "kept from seeing the media coverage as much as possible". "We're seriously concerned about their welfare and we’re doing whatever we can to help them," she said.

My questions are simple. Where was the support for the nurses to protect them from the media coverage. Where was Southern Cross Austereo's concern then? Why after the initial apology did they continue to plug the prank to keep it on their front page of their website? And where was the concern of the mental health of the people involved. As I said at the start, actions have consequences. Perhaps next time they have the option of humiliating someone they will consider the consequences.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Comparing this to Princess Diana's accident is completely ridiculous. These people made one phone call that was voluntarily answered.

There is a huge difference and comparing them is an insult to our intelligence and the Princess' memory.

Diana was involved in a CAR CHASE because the paparazzi wouldn't leave her alone. If anything, the better comparison would be the media explosion FOLLOWING the prank call and the public ridicule and hounding/pressure that this woman received.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

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