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Giving Channel Seven Australia an Aussie Salute

Editorial: Calling on Channel Seven Australia To Give Bali a “Fair Go” in How its Represented to the Australian Public

(4/14/2014) In what could be arguably claimed as “fair warning” – Australia’s Channel Seven is busily promoting its new “observational-documentary series” titled “What Really Happens in Bali.”

Channel Seven is promising a “no-holds-barred look what really goes down in Australia’s favourite tourist destination.”

Hyperbole masquerading as “news,” the Channel Seven special promises to take you inside BIMC and Sanglah Hospitals' emergency rooms, show motorbike and surfing mishaps as they happen and even explore the perils of acquiring a sexually transmitted disease while on a Bali holiday. 

Describing Bali as a “place of adventure, opportunity and non-stop partying” but with a propensity to turn into a “real hell,” Channel Seven’s new series introduces viewers  to “schoolies experiencing their first taste of freedom, to Bali Fashion Week-wannabes, detoxing celebrities, expats with new business ventures and even the self-confessed Aussie lothario who claims he’s slept with over 100 women in 90 days."

The series film team  also promises to take viewers inside Kerobokan Prison to visit death row inmates and include footage showing serious accidents “as they happen in Bali.”

The Balinese have a decades-long relationship with Australia’s Channel Seven coverage of their Island, having come to expect the very worst in biased Indonesian-bashing. What rubbish Channel Seven can’t dig up aboutBali, they manufacture or attempt to purchases from convicted felons - as recently witnessed in the case of Schapelle Corby.

Channel Seven is a perpetrator of terrible injustices to both Bali and to its gullible Australian viewers by continuing to adopt a sensational and highly-biased approach to its coverage of Bali.

If there is a “real story” about Bali to be told you won’t hear it on Channel Seven.

Based on the hyped-up promotional video now in circulation from Channel Seven promoting their new series, you can be certain that stories of Australians living relatively sedate and normal lives while making meaningful contributions to their adopted Island home won't be shown on Channel Seven.Similarly, if you’re looking to learn more about Australian John Fawcett and the life-saving and sight-restoring work done by his foundation; the Australian doctors sharing their surgical skills with Indonesian doctors; the Australians who are funding schools and orphanages across Bali; the heroic work done by Yannie and Nigel Mason to rescue Sumatran elephants; or the work of Mike O’Leary at the ROLE Foundation helping to end the cycle of poverty among the woman of South Bali and restore Bali’s damaged ecosystem; and the many other Australians making significant contributions in key areas of Bali’s economy - you're not going to see those stories on Channel Seven.

The feeling many Australians feel for Bali is genuine. Moved by a genuine affection a great number of unsung Australians  heroes live in Bali making a qualitative difference in improving the lives of the Balinese. Admittedly less puerilely titilating in the retelling than an interview with a randy yabbo out to sexually conquer our island, these stories won't likely form a part of Channel Sevens View of “What Really Happens in Bali.”

We would lay a personal challenge to Seven West Media Limited, the owners of Channel Seven, and its Chairman Kerry Stokes and CEO Tim Worner to consider raising its games and make the decision to pull the highly misleading coming broadcast of “What Really Happens in Bali.”

Or, at the very least, why not give the people of Bali a “fair go” by allowing its recently established Tourism Board equal time to tell their version an entire other side of Australians making a positive impact on “What Really Happens in Bali.”

Mr. Stokes and Ms. Worner, we have a story to tell about life in Bali. And, quite clearly, it’s not your story.