WZTV FOX 17 - Top Stories
2DayFM radio DJs Mel Greig and Michael Christian, who have faced worldwide fury over the hoax, spoke publicly about the prank for the first time in a televised interview with Australia's "A Current Affair." A separate interview on rival show "Today Tonight" also aired Monday evening.
Nurse Jacintha Saldanha answered the phone last week when the pair, impersonating Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Charles, called the hospital where the former Kate Middleton was being treated for acute morning sickness. She transferred the call to a fellow nurse caring for the duchess who gave the DJs confidential information about the Duchess's medical condition, which was broadcast on air.
Three days later, Saldanha died. Police have not yet determined the 46-year-old's cause of death, but many immediately assumed it was related to the stress from the call. Greig and Christian have been taken off the air indefinitely.
The radio hosts apologized on Monday for the hoax and both broke down in tears when asked about the moment they learned Saldanha was dead.
"There's not a minute that goes by that we don't think about her family and what they must be going through," Greig said, voice shaking. "And the thought that we may have played a part in that is gut-wrenching."
The DJs said that when the idea for the call came up in a team meeting, no one expected that they would actually be put through to the duchess' ward.
"We just assumed we'd get cut off at every single point and that'd be it," Christian said.
"The joke 100 percent was on us," he said. "The idea was never, `Let's call up and get through to Kate,' or `Let's speak to a nurse.' The joke was our accents are horrible, they don't sound anything like who they're intended to be."
"The entertainment value was in us," Greig added. "It was meant to be in our silly accents. That's where it was meant to end."
The decision to air the prerecorded call was made by executives higher up the chain, the DJs said.
Rhys Holleran, CEO of 2DayFM's parent company Southern Cross Austereo, has called Saldanha's death a tragedy, but defended the prank as a standard part of radio culture. He has also insisted the station had not broken any laws and had adhered to procedures. On Monday, Holleran said the station had tried at least five times to contact the hospital to discuss the prank before it went to air.
The call has sparked outrage across the globe, with the hosts receiving death threats and calls for them to be fired. Greig said she doesn't even want to think about returning to the airwaves.
"I remember my first question was, `Was she a mother?'" she said on "Today Tonight." Saldanha had two children.
Monday, December 10 2012, 03:44 AM CST
Bonnaroo and then what? More events could follow
May 20, 2013 12:33 GMT
MANCHESTER, Tenn. (AP) -- The former farm where the Bonnaroo music festival is held may play host to other events as well.
The partnership that puts on the annual music and arts festival in Manchester has steadily upgraded the site, adding a dozen water wells and permanent electrical power.
Festival partner Rick Farman told The Tennessean (http://tnne.ws/14nuEF5 ) his group is in active discussion with a lot of groups. The Great American Mud Run will be held at the site on July 27 and is expected to draw more than 5,000 participants.
Coffee County Mayor David Pennington said he's curious to see where such a plan could go, saying it could have a huge impact.
This year's Bonnaroo will be held June 13-16. Paul McCartney heads a long list if acts.
Information from: The Tennessean, http://www.tennessean.com
Asian stocks rise on signs of steady US recovery
BANGKOK (AP) -- Evidence of a steady economic recovery in the U.S. helped push Asian stock markets higher today.
BC-US--Dow Record-Three Personal Stories, 1st Ld-Writethru,1173
Dow Record: Three tales of ups, downs and changes
AP Photo FX102, FX103
Eds: With BC-US--Dow Record. Adds photos.
By SCOTT MAYEROWITZ
AP Business Writer
NEW YORK (AP) -- When the Dow first crossed 14,000, investors were overjoyed. ...
IN THE NEWS: FINANCIAL TIMES SITS HACKED
LONDON (AP) -- Another attack on a media site -- and again, one that is being claimed by the Syrian Electronic Army.
BRAS A FIRE HAZARD?
MILWAUKEE (AP) -- We haven't heard this much about the threat of bra burning since the days of the women's liberation movement.