Tearful radio host sorry for nurse's family

2012-12-10 09:47

Sydney - One of the Australian radio presenters who made a prank call to a London hospital treating Prince William's wife Kate on Monday sobbed as she recalled hearing the news that a nurse had been found dead.

Mel Greig and fellow presenter Michael Christian from Sydney radio station 2Day FM have been in hiding and undergoing counselling since their hoax sparked global outrage following the apparent suicide of Jacintha Saldanha.

In her first comments since Saldanha's death last week in London, an emotional Greig said she was devastated at being told the Indian-born nurse had died.

'I hope they're OK'

"Unfortunately I remember that moment very well because I haven't stopped thinking about it since it happened," she told Australia's Seven Network in a teaser segment ahead of the broadcast of a full interview later Monday.

"And I remember my first question was, was she a mother?

In a separate interview with the Nine Network, Greig added: "It came into my head that I just wanted to reach out to them (the family), give them a big hug and say sorry. I hope they're OK, I really do."

The call, with Greig and Christian posing as Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Charles, was taken by mother-of-two Saldanha, 46, at London's King Edward VII Hospital.

With no receptionist on duty in the early morning, she put them through to a colleague who divulged details of the pregnant Kate's recovery from severe morning sickness.

'Appalling' stunt

Saldanha was subsequently found dead, although British police have refused to confirm whether it was suicide pending an inquest.

Her death sparked an outpouring of fury against the radio station and the presenters, although the broadcaster on Monday said no-one could have foreseen the tragic consequences of what the hospital says was an "appalling" stunt.

Rhys Holleran, chief executive of Southern Cross Austereo, which owns 2Day FM, said the station called the hospital five times to discuss what it had recorded before going to air.

He said he was satisfied that the appropriate checks were conducted before the pre-recorded segment was broadcast.

"It is absolutely true to say that we actually did attempt to contact those people on multiple occasions," Holleran told Fairfax radio.

"We rang them up to discuss what we had recorded.

"We attempted to contact them on no less than five occasions," he added. "We wanted to speak to them about it."

Emergency board meeting

Holleran did not say whether the broadcaster was given any response. The stunt was vetted by lawyers before being aired in Sydney last week, according to the station.

"No one could have reasonably foreseen what has happened," added Holleran, although he said the station was reviewing its actions.

"We think that's an appropriate thing to be doing and we'll do it."

His comments came after Southern Cross Austereo held an emergency board meeting on Sunday to discuss the growing furore which has seen all advertising suspended, and vowed to cooperate with any investigations.

The case has triggered demands for tougher regulation of the electronic media although Australia's press regulator, the Australian Communications and Media Authority, has not commented on whether the station broke any rules.

Communications Minister Stephen Conroy said the ACMA was considering whether to initiate an inquiry beyond its usual process of giving broadcasters 60 days to respond to complaints.

"While the ACMA is gathering the facts and working through the process it would be unwise for me to comment," said Conroy.

Sections of the British press have savagely condemned the hoax and some people online say the presenters have blood on their hands. But Australian media have hit back at "hysterical finger-pointing".

Comments

  • Jeremy - 2012-12-10 10:08

    I feel rather sorry for the two presenters. Yes, you could say their prank call was in bad taste - but what prank call isn't? And heaven knows, presenters like Jeremy Mansfield and John Berks have done enough of them in this country! The two Oz presenters could hardly have known how badly their prank call was going to backfire - or that the duty nurse would take it so personally. I suspect the nurse in question may have been a bit unstable.....after all, she hadn't been chastised or disciplined by the hospital. And now it's something the two presenters will have to live with for the rest of their lives....

      handy.andy.773 - 2012-12-10 10:32

      A young married couple is expecting their first child. The mother is feeling sick and needs to go to hospital. The entire family is concerned and worry if she and the unborn baby going to be ok. In which messed up universe is it ok to phone the hospital and joke about this? Shocking. And just because they have a special title still does not make it right.

      charmaine.rowlands - 2012-12-10 10:35

      The difference between Mansfield, Berks and Simpson and these two, is that the aforementioned reveal DURING the prank call that that's what it is. In law you have to disclose when a call is being recorded and I think this applies in Australia as well. If it doesn't, it SHOULD. The whole thing was in poor taste, simple as that. No, they couldn't have known it would "backfire" like this, but it did, and now they must face the consequences. No sympathy from me

      denis.delaport - 2012-12-10 10:42

      Jeremy, you imply we accept the actions and behavior of our local presenters as being acceptable. If memory serves me correct they are obligated to get a "Release" from the "Victim". This was nothing more than an ambush. They should be black listed and removed from the air entirely for life.

      gvangreunen - 2012-12-10 10:44

      @ Charmaine ... there is still no way that they can be held responsible for the nurses death. She must have had other serious issues in her life in order to do so, maybe the prank was the final straw, who knows, but certainly not the ultimate cause. And, if she was that weak and unstable that she did off herself as a result of the prank, well then I can't be sympathetic anyway.

      pieterduplessis - 2012-12-10 10:53

      I feel there should be no consequences. They are the easy scapegoats now, but what about the people near to the nurse, did her work/boss put pressure on her?

      charmaine.rowlands - 2012-12-10 10:57

      @gvangreunen - i completely agree that they are not "responsible" for her death, but this is why there are checks and balances before this type of prank goes to air. Clearly protocol was not followed and the media must accept the consequences of their actions. You can't know if a person is unstable and that what you do may push them over the edge - but this DID! Therefore assume that all people may have other serious issues going on in their lives and follow the process. Mel Greig's tears don't change the facts.

      gvangreunen - 2012-12-10 11:14

      @ Charmaine, I have to agree with you (especially w.r.t. checks and balances) and yes pranks are often over the top. I sometimes fear that some poor sods seem as if they're about to have a heart attack in some of Schuster's movies, but where does this leave us ... no pranks or humour at the expensive of others for fear that they might off themselves ... nah, I'd rather run the risk myself than live in that sort of world!

      sounesc - 2012-12-10 11:44

      The difference between Jeremy Mansfield, John Berks and Whackhead is that they dont call requesting information and also it is normally requested by someone close to the target.

      jacqui.c.baumgardt - 2012-12-10 12:20

      I agree.

      andrew.cummins.9 - 2012-12-10 12:37

      Hang on. I wonder how many people actualy listened to the prank. All this woman did was answer the phone and then said she will call someone else. They never said anything derogatory to her or about her or. Plus the coroners report is still not out as the autopsy will only be done this week. Yes im sure this brings out the sensationalism in the South African public but there is no way you can balme these to for her death Im sorry

      koo.doyle - 2012-12-10 13:58

      Handy Andy she had morning sickness, not terminal cancer ffs. To kill yourself over a prank that was already blowing over, and had no repercussions, is extreme and a bit ridiculous. What next??? Ban all pranks lest someone overreact like this? We already live in a nanny culture of censoriousness, to lambast the presenters is really taking it too far. Pranks happen every day, and people have been made bigger asses than this nurse was, and have laughed it off.

      philip.harris.967 - 2012-12-10 14:40

      Have I missed something here? Do we KNOW she committed suicide? If she did , do we know why? Or are we all guessing? Here family say she was a devout Catholic who would never commit suicide. We are 3 weeks fom Xmas and she had 2 children. Sorry but I find it hard to accept that a woman kills herself because she transferred a call. Just be careful next time you are in the supermarket ....if you take that last packet of Oumas rusks off the shelf ....someone who desperately needs that packet of rusks may take it into their heads to kill themselves ...and YOU will be responsible.

      anthea.lagrange - 2012-12-10 15:13

      Now they know what it feels like to be on the receiving end of international derision. Not so funny after all.

      nico.brits.581 - 2012-12-10 21:02

      @Philip Harris, you have no idea what the pressure on you is if someone in the medical world trangressed so called The Privacy Law. And if it happens that the people involved in this transgression are the Queen, Prince Charles and Kate etc you can be safe to assume the pressure increased by orders of magnatude easily over the threshold for a devout catholic to commit suicide.

  • rejeanne.nel.33 - 2012-12-10 10:17

    At the very least this nurse would have been fired for allowing confidential information about the royal couple to land in the hands of an Australian tabloid radio station. Sure the Hospital NOW says that they wouldn't have done anything but the reality is that this hospital would have ended up with some serious egg on their faces and trust me if this story did't have such a tragic ending both the nurses involved would have been dismissed.

      Jeremy - 2012-12-10 11:11

      She didn't reveal any confidential information. She just put the call through to the ward. She was completely blameless, which is why her suicide was so unexepcted.....

      sounesc - 2012-12-10 12:07

      She didnt give out any information, she was just the person that put the call through to the nurse.

      andrew.cummins.9 - 2012-12-10 13:31

      This woman never talked more than 10 words to them. She put the call through to someone else and all this other lady said was that Kate was resting. Thats it. No personal information was given out at all. Just love how people can sensationalize stories like this without fact.

      koo.doyle - 2012-12-10 13:59

      Really, so you know better than the hospital or indeed the royal spokesperson?

      andrew.cummins.9 - 2012-12-10 15:48

      Well Alecia now that you put it like that I guess we better put all nurses on suicide watch ( if indeed it was suicide) as it appears that putting calls through is highly stressful, especially the believing ones. Fact is that any one can be fooled any day of the week. Doesnt mean it is malicious. We still don't know why this woman died. Hvae you given thought to the fact that it might as well jsut be a coinicdence ?

  • mario.dippenaar - 2012-12-10 10:21

    "They shouldn't have pranked the medical personal" - Captain "20/20" Hindsight

  • customdesign - 2012-12-10 10:24

    People don't commit suicide because of other people, it is their decision. If she did commit suicide, then there were already underlying issues and chances are she would have done it anyways somewhere along the line.

      rosco.adams - 2012-12-10 12:59

      People who take their own lives are not week minded individuals. They suffer from a very real mental condition such as anxiety or depression. To call someone weak minded for having an illness which is not their fault is tasteless and utterly sadistic. Everyone has a fight or flight instinct in them, to have the opposing instinct is worrying because it's not something that is a "choice" but an affliction the person cannot may not be in control of. By your senseless sentiment, people with any mental disorder would be considered weak minded, purely because they think differently to the way you do? Your the weak minded one, for being ignorant to the plight of others.

      customdesign - 2012-12-10 15:58

      I never said they are weak minded, I just said that it was not the radio show that caused it, but rather depression. Read properly before passing judgements. I have dealt with suicide and depression in a very real way in my life and understand it better than you think.

  • hlgiorgino - 2012-12-10 10:25

    Hero to Zero quicker than you can say Royal Famil.

  • simon.templer.549 - 2012-12-10 10:26

    Broken the rules!!!! Does the absolute lack of integrity and common decency ring no bell with these immoral people? If their action led to the death of an aborigine, the response would have been totally different. A worldwide travel ban should be imposed for at least five years. Greig seems to feel regret but from the expression on Christian's face, his boredom with the whole affair is clearly evident. He should hang his head and change his surname.

      koo.doyle - 2012-12-11 07:50

      What total bull. I guess you've never laughed at a prank before. Bloody hypocrite. And please, yes, drag the race card into it.

  • sudika.harkhu - 2012-12-10 10:30

    Too late for tears, she is dead! You gonna have to sleep with that everyday for the rest of your life.

      andrew.cummins.9 - 2012-12-10 13:34

      If this womans death was indeed suicide, the report is still not out. Explain how thye should be held accountable for her death and why they should not sleep peacefully every night. They did not cause this womans death

      philip.harris.967 - 2012-12-10 14:44

      Well said Andrew ...we dont know how this woman died. There is going to be egg on a lot of faces if it turns out she didnt commit suicide.

      goldwright - 2012-12-10 21:14

      While it was a silly prank call, the dj's can hardly be held responsible for her (apparent) suicide. While suicide is tragic, it is not simply "just one thing" that causes a person's suicide - (if indeed it was a suicide, as the results are not yet out). Scapegoats are needed and it's the DJ's, wrongly, as far as I'm concerned. What about lax hospital security and poor screening of phonecalls - they were dealing with royals for heavens sake, with so much technology in this day and age, & surely with caller ID (in a country that can afford it!) they would have realized the queen wasn't phoning from Australia?!

  • bok.esterhuizen - 2012-12-10 10:35

    Sue them let them pay not only with money but with aggressive action against their names also the Radio station close it down how possible they could not get hold of these people to clear the air before broadcast but it was easy to get them on the air to harm their lifes and their families what about that ladies children.

      andrew.cummins.9 - 2012-12-10 13:34

      ON waht grounds are you going to sue them ?? And how did they exactly cause harm to this womans family. Have you lsitened to the prank ?

      goldwright - 2012-12-10 21:21

      Bok, - maybe they should close down the hospital switchboard, for their poor screening of that phone call? They knew they were dealing with royalty, so why didn't they have caller ID, then they would have known where the call was coming from. If it was suicide, & I'm not saying the woman was weak, but she killed herself, she took the decision to kill herself, & SHE made that choice ultimately, so you cannot realistically go on a witch hunt and blame those two dj's.

  • reine.marais - 2012-12-10 10:41

    To pretend to be someone that one isn't is fraudulent representation. This is not a mere prank. This is illegal behaviour. How would you like it if someone stole your identity and presented themselves as you? I am surprised that the Royal Family is not suing.

      customdesign - 2012-12-10 11:40

      Oh please, don't be so self righteous. If no one died then this would not have been an issue.

  • brenda.yelvertonburns - 2012-12-10 10:53

    This surely cannot be the reason why the nurse took her own life.

      reine.marais - 2012-12-10 11:09

      Who knows? Maybe the woman was terrified of losing her job? Maybe she had just gone through so much and couldn't deal with yet more trauma. For the presenters to have messed illegally with other people's lives, should never have occurred in the first place.

      ruth.kloppers - 2012-12-11 14:16

      No, but it might be what pushed her over the edge. The final humiliation for a depressed woman. Unfortunately, as with our own DJ's, there is little regard for the person on the other end, and in many cases, these prank calls are just another form of bullying.

  • jp.byrnes.7 - 2012-12-10 11:14

    I agree with many comments, however, we must take into account that this prank call did involve not just anybody, but the royal family, and the media ridiculed the lady beforehand, like Piers Morgan on his show on CNN. She must have felt public humiliation. I remember watching Piers Morgan, him and his crew making fun of the lady and laughing, and a day later they where all sad and 'oh no, she committed suicide'. Seriously something wrong with the media in this day and age. It's more about sensationalism, who can we make fun of and who's life can we ruin today?, instead of just reporting the facts and leaving innocent people alone.

  • Barefoot - 2012-12-10 11:16

    there are places you shouldn't prank call especially those dealing with sensitive information, that when leaked may cause harm to the person providing it (fired, sanctioned by their council e.t.c) and intrude on peoples privacy.

  • Khetha Hlophe - 2012-12-10 11:18

    They are the causative of her death! No one knows 100% what was going on is mere speculation in her life.

      goldwright - 2012-12-10 21:27

      Bit contradictive you are - you say no one knows 100% what was going on in her life and is mere speculation, so how do you know FOR SURE the DJ@'s are the cause of her death? How do you know for sure there were not other reasons that she comitted suicide, if she did indeed for certain commit suicide. Like you said, - mere speculation & you are speculating that the dj's caused her death.

  • vernon.samuel.7 - 2012-12-10 11:18

    These hysterical commentators should really get a grip. Why do we not also ban stand-up comics from making jokes about blind people, or deaf people or children. Just in case they all kill themselves. Also let's not joke about stressed politicians or they may jump in front of a blue-light brigade. In fact let's ban stand-up comedy altogether. Just because some emotional weakling cannot take a joke. Get real.

      charmaine.rowlands - 2012-12-10 11:34

      this was hardly stand-up comedy. It was personal and Jacintha Saldanha was publically humiliated AROUND THE WORLD. If you read statements from her family, colleagues and friends, perhaps you will understand just how mortified she was. You're taking this from the sublime to the ridiculous!!

      vernon.samuel.7 - 2012-12-10 12:22

      How's this for ridiculous? I was taught in church that suicide is a sin and the a person who commits suicide will spend eternity in hell. So if the eternal god of love and compassion does not give a toss about this nurse, why on earth should we? Life goes on...

      charmaine.rowlands - 2012-12-10 12:36

      how did we go from stand-up comedy to the Bible?

      rosco.adams - 2012-12-10 13:07

      I really wish people would stop saying she was a weakling. By those statements, your actually portray someone taking their own life as being weak. She could have had a real Mental disorder such as Anxiety or depression, which is an illness, the result of which is suicidal thoughts which are out of that persons control. Also, the church used to teach that suicide was a sin, and no longer do, because suicide goes against our instinct to survive, and the opposite is a result of illness.

      michelle.thiart - 2012-12-10 21:50

      If she had any mental illness, wouldn't someone recognize it. I men she worked with fellow nurses and doctors?

      goldwright - 2012-12-10 22:04

      Yes, Jacintha was publically humiliated around the world, fair enough and not nice, but how long do these "sensational" media stories last? If she hadn't of killed herself, this would have blown over by now & we wouldn't even know her name & there would have been some other event that the paparazzi would have focused on, but she did kill herself & now everyone is up in arms about it. Tragic yes, but mortified for what really? She did not cause serious harm to anyone or cause anyone to die, as a nurse. We all make mistakes, we are human. Was this "mortification" really the only thing that led to her suicide? If she had no history of mental illness and comitted suicide only because of that prank call, then ULTIMATELY, she was repsonsible for killing herself, - ultimately she made that CHOICE to kill herself. Yes, a stupid prank call, for which two dj's will have to live with for the rest of their lives, may have led to her suicide, but still, she had a CHOICE, and at the end of the day, we all have a choice, to give up or carry on. If she did have some mental illness, then she had underlying problems, of which her suicide then cannot be wholly blamed on the prank call - a tipping point yes, but who knows, if she hadn't of killed herself now, maybe it would have been 10 years down the line, when this prank call was long forgotton.

  • jairaj.sureschandra - 2012-12-10 11:35

    Well, my view is that your remorse appears to be genuine but you could not possibly have foreseen the result of your actions, nobody would have. But you will have to endure this tragedy for the rest of your lives. The sentence does not fit the "crime" .......

      vernon.samuel.7 - 2012-12-10 12:46

      There's nothing to endure really. I have seen boxers kill their opponents in the ring. After mourning for a few months, they were back in the ring bashing in another guy's head and ribs. By next week this story would have been forgotten and all of the emotional commentators on this site would have found another story and another 'villain' to curse. Cest la vie!

  • lynne.voros.1 - 2012-12-10 11:45

    No matter what... who on earth thinks its ok to make a prank call to a hospital and NOT tell anyone its a prank call? Thats just sick! Anything to do with illness shouldn't be deemed prank-able anyway. Who cares whether the nurse was unstable or had other issues in her life - I have NO sympathy for a pair of idiots who make their living partly out of making someone else's life miserable and don't tell the 'victim' they've been pranked! I agree with JT - our guys here make sure the pranked party is told at the end of the call that it IS a prank. I hope this pair think about the consequences of their 'fun' for a long long time!

  • melissa.dollerquinn - 2012-12-10 12:18

    Havnt read the comments below. But I dont think the presenters did anything wrong. The receptionist did not divulge any information which could have led to her getting into any trouble. I believe there must be another reason for her decision. It is awful what she must have been feeling for her to have done that. But the presenters certainly, in my opinion, arent to blame

      vernon.samuel.7 - 2012-12-10 12:40

      Agreed, nice to see people being objective and not emotional about the subject.

  • mrp721 - 2012-12-10 12:19

    Sounds like the only one with any remorse is the female presenter, the radio station keeps making excuses... Yes, no one could have foreseen the consequences of the prank but lets hope that future pranksters will just think a little ahead when attempting to mess with the VIP's etc.... But with that said, this nurse had already planned her suicide, it was just a matter of timing for her and this was just what she needed to help her over the edge.. I honestly don't think the prank caused the suicide, something else lay far deeper..

  • brionyl.french - 2012-12-10 12:22

    Look its simple you mock people and some take it more seriously. In the end pranks are a form of bullying if you wanna stop bullying stop picking on people for a laugh!

  • edward.martin.549 - 2012-12-10 12:52

    I am very sorry to hear of the death of this lady in London, but I honestly don’t believe the call had much if anything to do with her suicide. All she did was answering the phone and then transfer it to another nurse, it was that nurse who gave out the info not the one who passed away - I think it simply is coincidental that the person who transferred the call committed suicide and it's easy to blame the radio hosts. If I have to count the number of times people were rude to me on the phone and said mean things then I would have been gone long ago. I think that this lady was suffering from depression and other serious emotional problems which have now been linked to the prank call. Its sad non-the-less, but crucifying the radio hosts won’t change the outcome.

  • leon.vanderlinde.14 - 2012-12-10 13:02

    She is sorry. Sorry's ass. It is now too late. I say sue the bitch and her colleague. If they want to make prank calls. Let them suffer.

  • diane.wilson.5099 - 2012-12-10 13:10

    How does a nurse that sensitive reach the age of 46? Nurses deal with life and death issues all the time. Apart from that,she survived giving birth to and raising two teenage children.And putting a prank call through to a hospital ward is enough to make her kill herself?It simply doesn't add up.

      goldwright - 2012-12-10 22:35

      I agree, - I'm a nurse, and I give of my best to my patients, but there are times when EVERY nurse will question a decision of themselves, and I can honestly say there are more serious things I could have killed myself over in 20+ years of nursing, than a prank phone call...... I know a nurse who was fired because she was the scapegoat for a poor decision by the Doctor, which led to the brain damage of a patient - did she commit suicide? No, she had two children to bring up and who woulld have been lost without their Mum, she did not give up - she found another job, and she carried on (and the Dr got off scott free). There are worse things to kill yourself over a prank call, - it would have blown over.......

  • pete.bower.982 - 2012-12-10 13:49

    I agree with Jeremy. A simple prank, with no evil intentions (and not even well-acted), gone badly wrong because of nurse who was quite clearly unstable. Having said that, the hospital is partly to blame for lax security: Good heavens, you hyave the most sought-after Royal in the world puking her guts out in your care and you allow arbitrary telephone calls through to the ward??? WTF?? Where were the controls? Would they let soomebody into the ward just because he was wearing a white coat and looked like a doctor? Of course not. So why not apply a bit of security to the telecoms system as well? Particularly considering what the patient is paying.... Also, the British media have reacted with typical British overkill, arguably in an attempt to deflect the obvious public opprobrium which has resulted from the revelations of the Levinson (sp?) commission.

      goldwright - 2012-12-10 22:37

      Couldn't have said it better myself.

  • LourensdL - 2012-12-10 14:15

    I hate prank calls. It it of bad taste to make fun of other people. I hope it is a lesson to all prank callers.

      ruth.kloppers - 2012-12-11 14:18

      agree wholeheartedly. Whether funny or not, it's always at the expense of the other person.

  • sandra.pereira.9634 - 2012-12-10 14:39

    We in South Africa have had many Morning Radio shows where the presenter does prank calls, ie Berksie, and Jeremy Mansfield. The listeners love it and now Wackhead Simpson is doing the same and his latest cd is selling well Im sure. One cannot blame the broadcasters for the nurse on the switchboard at the hospital taking her life. We dont know, maybe the nurse had other issues, we cannot point fingers, but just feel very sad for her family that this prank call led her to take her life.

      philip.harris.967 - 2012-12-10 14:48

      Interesting that the UK Police are now calling her death "unexplained" and not suicide. The coroners report will be interesting.

  • Sam - 2012-12-10 16:22

    Did any of you actually listen to the call or read the transcript?? Saldanha didn't divulge ANY infrmation herself - the nurse she put the call through to did so. In the call, the DJ's even joke around about Charles taking the Corgis out for a walk, and there is even a spot of swearing. It's clearly a prank and the nurse who chatted to the DJ's would surely feel more foolish than Saldanha would, who only spoke to them for a few seconds in order to put them through. Ken Wharfe, who was Princess Diana's bodyguard, said that the protection officers did not follow protocol in such situations etc etc... go and look up the article yourself. I am so tired of this precious pair and their complaints about the media and invasion of their privacy. The call was hilarious and the DJ's should be reinstated to their posts with immediate effect. And another thing: I highly doubt it was a suicide. William originally indicated that he was furious about the call. So then a nurse mysteriously dies. Then the palace says that they weren't offended by it??? Get real, the palace is behind all of this.

      delish7564 - 2012-12-10 18:22

      You know all this for sure do you Sam, that the Palace was behind it? What people seem to forget is regardless of the fact that she didn't divulge any information, her name was broadcast for all the world and being from a different culture this could have been seen as dishonouring her family and we all know how that sometimes ends! Come on folks, we weren't there, we don't know this lady or her family so to speculate about her mental health in such cruel terms (by some people) is beyond the pall. Have some compassion for her husband and children, there certainly doesn't seem to be a lot of it around on this site. As for the presenters, I don't feel sorry for them at all and I certainly don't buy the "tears", to me it smacks of a PR stunt. This is not the first time this radio station has pulled such a prank, but it's the first time it has caused such a stir resulting in actual losses, i.e. advertising being pulled which can amount to a lot of money. Maybe they'll think twice next time, but somehow I doubt it.

  • acsteyn - 2012-12-10 17:50

    I think it is appaling they should be charged with assisted manslaughter.

      Bob.Cee123 - 2012-12-10 20:39

      @ SALife - Is there even such a charge? If that is the case then by your logic whenever somebody decides they don't love their spouse any more and leave them, then the spouse kills themself (this actually happens MUCH more frequently than suicide after prank call) then the spouse who left should be charged with 'assisted manslaughter'. There is a far more tangible causative link between the suicidal spouse and the departure of their loved one. Why is the world having such a massive, misplaced knee-jerk over this? It's never nice when somebody commits suicide but there's no good reason to believe the radio presenters are to blame for this. There is much more reason to believe the hospital failed her by not having more robust call-screening procedures in place. She simply passed the call on without so much as a hesitation. Not even her fault if the hospital didn't adequately brief her or provide suitable guidance on call screening requirements. Hypothetically, similar tactics could easily have been employed by a tabloid or local newspaper and this is actually a plausible scenario and the hospital should have had adequate measures in place to shield the hospital from such attempts to get a scoop on this story. Here we have a nurse who, without batting an eyelid, transfers a call. A fair and honest mistake. Why would she see fit to commit suicide after this? Receiving the dressing-down / @ss-chewing of her career would certainly push an already unstable person that way.

  • bounca363 - 2012-12-10 19:38

    Firstly explain to me why a nurse would kill herself if she fell victim to a hoax. Seriously, I think the hoax was done in bad taste but not the end of the world.

  • nico.brits.581 - 2012-12-10 20:52

    This is the effects of our draconical privacy laws. You are not supposed to say anything to anyone about a patient, family calling from who knows where you must just be non specific, 'Oh X is getting better or it is going not so good today'. You can just imagine the postion of the nurse on the one hand, she believing, the Queen and Prince Charles calling on the other hand the privacy laws. Being crushed between QE II and the privacy laws. Shame on you two Auzzies!

      rina.breed - 2012-12-11 11:15

      The Aussies did a PRANK. Difficult concept for Royals and their followers. And for morning sickness we just vomit and get over it.

  • pohlmannmail - 2012-12-10 21:54

    The UK is looking for a scapegoat. The hospital is most probably protecting one of their senior staff who threatened the poor nurse with dismissal. The poor nurse is possibly the only breadwinner in her family and needed this job, couldn't face what she was threatened with. Us South Africans already know how attention can be directed away from the source when the government wants to hide something they have done and they know will raise eyebrows and controversy. The government in the UK are just as skelm and a quick to arrest and blow things out of proportion.

  • bernard.linde - 2012-12-11 07:44

    Oh, for crying in a bucket, let this whole thing just die. Good or bad taste aside, the nurse was clearly psychologically unstable and to put THEM out as the scapegoats is rediculous.

  • ashlin.maharaj.1 - 2012-12-11 08:39

    I think a lot of writers are looking at this in a very simple way and handling it with kid gloves. You are dealing with the Royal family of England being the scapegoat of a prank call and having your name go viral worldwide. You maybe be labelled as the village idiot that believed the hoax and transferred to the other lady telling her it is the queen on the line. The pressure was too much for the nurse.

  • ben.louw.5 - 2012-12-11 08:45

    This whole story is retarded. Blaming the DJ's for her suicide..Oh Please... The woman was obviously unstable or people at her work pushed her to it. Killing yourself over a prank call... You were going to punch your own ticket anyways.

  • louise.steyn - 2012-12-11 08:45

    The mental condition of the nurse needs to be assessed BEFORE the prank call. She could not have been all that stable to start off with. I don't condone what the presenters did, it was rather stupid, but on the other hand I see their act as last straw perhaps, but not the total cause of the unfortunate death.

  • jennifer.h.jordaan - 2012-12-11 08:49

    prank callers just don`t think far enough ahead. leave the young royals out of it. since when is it funny to prank call ANYONE who is ill????

      rina.breed - 2012-12-11 10:44

      Are the young royals unprankable or above-pranks? What the .... they are as human as I am.

  • theresa.letcher - 2012-12-11 11:11

    I don't believe the radio presenters should in anyway feel responsible for what happended. They made a prank call which so many of us ourselves have done, we all enjoy those pranks whilst we listen to the radio....... The pressure for that poor nurse must have come from the royals themselves and they should be held accountable. They are just people and get sick just like the rest of us. They know that what they do is always in the media and being sick whilst being pregnant is not going to be any different.

  • flynn.govender - 2012-12-11 13:10

    Everyone knows about prank calls - how can this prank call be blamed on someone's death. This lady had other issues and the media is just causing a frenzy to the public. I feel sorry for the presenters as they did this is good faith not knowing what the repercussions would be

  • philip.spence.338 - 2012-12-11 13:48

    I don't think a prank call can spark a suicide there has to be more underlying things there always are. so investigate here background before condeming the pranksters.

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