'The bloke's had too many chances': More advertisers dump Jones after Ardern comment

A number of high-profile brands have cut ties with the controversial broadcaster after he said Prime Minister Scott Morrison should "shove a sock down" the throat of New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern.

Alan Jones.

Alan Jones. Source: AAP

Koala Mattress, Anytime Fitness and Volkswagen are the latest brands to cut ties with Alan Jones' radio show after he suggested Prime Minister Scott Morrison should last week.

The withdrawals come as treasuer Josh Frydenberber came under fire for defending the controversial broadcaster as a "mainstay" of Australian media in response to a question about the comments.

"Koala has cut ties with Alan Jones ... We're a significant buyer in the medium, and it's something we should have done earlier," the mattress company posted on Twitter on Monday. 

"Climate change is real, violence against women starts with words and the bloke has had too many chances ... @2GB873 time to wake up."

Anytime Fitness also withdrew its advertising spend from Macquarie Radio on Monday, joining the likes of ME Bank, Snooze, Bing Lee and Amart amid rising backlash over Jones' remarks.

"The comments made last week by Alan Jones regarding Jacinda Arden do not represent our view or values," Anytime Fitness said in a Facebook post.

Alan Jones talks to the media.
Sydney talkback shock jock Alan Jones has announced his retirement from radio. Source: AAP

"For this reason, we pulled all our advertising from 2GB (Macquarie Radio) last Friday and do not have any further advertising planned with the station."

Responding on its Facebook page to people threatening to sell their cars or choose another make for their next, Volkswagen Australia said it had "ceased all advertisements with 2GB" from Monday.

Last Thursday, Jones criticised Ms Ardern on air after she said "Australia has to answer to the Pacific" on climate change at a forum in the island nation of Tuvalu.

He said Ms Ardern was a "joke" for preaching about climate change and that Mr Morrison should "shove a sock down her throat".

On Monday, Mr Frydenberg refused to back calls that Jones be taken off the airwaves.

"In relation to those comments, they were clearly inappropriate and the Prime Minister spoke for all of us when he said they were out of line and they should not have been made," Mr Frydenberg told ABC News Breakfast.

"But I do want to acknowledge that Alan Jones is also a mainstay of our media and he's been around for a long time and he has a lot of followers," he said.

"As for his longevity on the airwaves, that's a matter for the particular broadcasters in question".

Mr Frydenberg also used the interview to highlight some of Jones' community work.

"You've seen Alan Jones pursue causes to the benefit of the communities that he broadcasts into. For example, the work he's done around droughts and floods and the victims in Queensland and NSW has been very significant," he said.

The comments have prompted outrage on social media.

On Saturday, Macquarie Media chairman Russell Tate issued a warning to Jones, telling him he will be sacked if he continues to use offensive and violent language about women.

Mr Tate said the comments had caused offence to many people but that Jones has publicly apologised for them.

The breakfast radio host recognised his comments were "careless, unnecessary and wrong" and "should have been more clearly thought out", he said.

New Zealand's Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern meets with Australia's Prime Minister Scott Morrison during the Pacific Islands Forum.
New Zealand's Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern meets with Australia's Prime Minister Scott Morrison during the Pacific Islands Forum. Source: AAP

"He indicated that he had apologised sincerely to Prime Minister Ardern for any offence given, and had certainly not intended to suggest any harm through his comments," the chairman said in a statement.

"Notwithstanding his apologies, I have today discussed the matter with Alan and advised him that any recurrence of commentary of this nature will result in the termination of his contract."

Macquarie Media only re-signed Jones on a lucrative two-year contract in May following months of tense negotiations.

Additional reporting: AAP

4 min read
Published 19 August 2019 at 11:58am
Source: SBS