What is not funny is how this strategy has become the reality of the battle to implement pokie reform.
The promotion for Four Corners lacks any mention of the cornerstone of the reforms. Pre-commitment was never proposed to be "mandatory" for all. The truth is that gamblers will be able to lose up to $150 per hour gambling on pokies that require no pre-commitment, no card, no license to punt. At a maximum bet of $1, this will account for 80% of existing gamblers without them having to change their gambling habits. This modest consumer protection measure asks only gamblers whose choice it is to gamble on the dangerous high intensity machines to choose how much they are prepared to lose.
Here's how Four Corners pro-pokies bias shows through:
- The reforms are described as "radical",
- The core question posed is "it was good politics - but was it good policy?"
- Wilkie "cut a deal"
- The lead advocate for the clubs statement is broadcast that "it was a deal done behind closed doors" - the truth is that the agreement has always been a matter of public record. Want a copy? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I'll send you one.
- The reporter states "And the punters are in a spin"
- A gambler's statement is broadcast "people have got to register at how much they are going to play. They won't play at all". This is wrong and promotes the ClubsNSW spin without question.
One wonders how many times this inaccurate and biased promo will be broadcast before Monday night. It should be withdrawn and re-edited.
Click here to read the Four Corners promo page.
There appears to be more bad and biased reporting on the way...
- The story is called "Wilkie's Gamble".
- There is a false statement " "Labor promised to introduce smart card technology that would force gamblers to decide in advance how much they would spend when they played poker machines." The actual promise allowed for gamblers to gamble on safe machines without any card, any registration, any setting of limits.
- The reporter's question is set "why did he choose pre-commitment technology that had never been properly tested?". The fact is that the technology has been tested. It has been in use in Australia and overseas for years.
By using the word "play" instead of gambling; the ABC has been duped by the Yes Minister strategy.
I have already written to Four Corners in an effort to have the full facts disclosed. I urge you to do the same. Click here to send a comment.