Mike Christian

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For the former Australian rules footballer and sports commentator, see Michael Christian.

Mike Christian is an Australian radio presenter.

Career[edit]

On 5 October 2009, Christian started a position as the afternoons announcer at Austereo's Fox FM in Melbourne, Victoria[1] before moving to mornings. He was also the station's music director.[2] He moved to Sydney's 2Day FM in December 2012 to host the Hot30 Countdown with Mel Greig,[3] a nationally syndicated program.[4]

Royal prank[edit]

On 6 December 2012, Christian and his 2Day FM radio co-host, Mel Greig, made a radio prank call to the hospital that was caring for Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, during her first pregnancy. The duo tricked the hospital into releasing private medical information on the Duchess by using "bad accents" to mimic Queen Elizabeth II and the Prince of Wales in an attempt to talk with the Duchess.[5]

Two days later, one of the nurses who was tricked by the pair was found dead in a suspected suicide.[6][7]

Both Christian and Greig were seen on their Twitter accounts boasting about the prank a day earlier, calling it "the easiest prank call ever made". They were both suspended from broadcasting following the death.[8] In an interview on the Nine Network's A Current Affair program, Christian said that "We are shattered, heartbroken and our deepest sympathy goes to the family, friends and all those people affected. Mel and myself are incredibly sorry for the situation and what's happened."[9]

On 27 January 2013, 2dayFM's parent company announced on its Facebook page that the Hot 30 show responsible for the prank would not be returning.[10]

Christian returned to the Melbourne Fox FM morning program on 11 February 2013, and his move there created controversy.[11]

On Sunday 28 April 2013 the UK Sunday Times newspaper reported that Jacintha Saldanha, the nurse who committed suicide as a result of the "Royal Prank", had authored a suicide note blaming the two Australian DJs, including Michael Christian, for her suicide.[12] She also asked that they be made responsible for her mortgage.[13]

In June 2013, Southern Cross Austereo awarded Christian the next Top Jock award - a decision that was criticised in the Australian media. Australian National Communications Minister Stephen Conroy told a Melbourne radio station "I think there’s a bit of bad taste involved there. There were some very serious consequences of what was a prank and to be seen to be rewarding people so soon after such an event, I think, is just in bad taste."[14]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Williams, Luke (27 October 2009). "Are we witnessing the death of the shock jock?". Crikey. Retrieved 11 December 2012. 
  2. ^ Lallo, Michael (11 December 2011). "Mix masters: the art of noise". The Age. 
  3. ^ Han, Esther (9 December 2012). "Dream jobs turn sour for ambitious DJs". Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 10 December 2012. 
  4. ^ "Mel Greig and Michael Christian interviewed on TV over death of Jacintha Saldanha". Herald Sun. 11 December 2012. 
  5. ^ "Kate Middleton Pregnant: Australian 2DayFM DJs Prank Call King Edward VII Hospital". Huffington Post UK. 5 December 2012. Retrieved 11 December 2012. 
  6. ^ "Nurse who took Kate prank call dead". The Sun. 8 December 2012. Retrieved 11 December 2012. 
  7. ^ John Lofthouse (7 December 2012). Official on royal prank nurse's death. CBS News. 
  8. ^ "Kate prank call nurse commits suicide". LBC Radio 97.3. Retrieved 11 December 2012. 
  9. ^ "Royal Prank DJs: 'We Are Both Shattered'". Sky News. 10 December 2012. Retrieved 11 December 2012. 
  10. ^ "Royal pranksters' show replaced by Austereo". smh.com.au. 28 January 2013. Retrieved 28 January 2013. 
  11. ^ Idato, Michael (11 February 2013). "Royal prankster back on air". smh.com.au. Retrieved 11 February 2013. 
  12. ^ Leppard, David (28 April 2013). "Suicide note blames DJs for death of hoaxed nurse - behind paywall". thesundaytimes.co.uk. Retrieved 29 April 2013. 
  13. ^ "Prank call nurse 'blamed Australian DJs in suicide note'". abc.net.au. 29 April 2013. Retrieved 29 April 2013. 
  14. ^ "Australian DJ in Kate nurse suicide hoax call gets 'next top jock' radio award". the Evening Standard UK. 5 June 2013. Retrieved 5 June 2013. 

External links[edit]