Seven pulls tacky Spotlight episode from NYE

Updated: Seven will no longer see in 2024 with a panned episode targetting transgender kids.


Seven has now pulled the late night Spotlight repeat for a movie,  New Year’s Eve.


What a tacky way to see in 2024…

In a disappointing programming move, Seven will see it replay its controversial Spotlight “Gender Agenda” episode at 11pm on Sunday night -effectively making it the last show on its primary channel this year.

The episode fronted by Liam Bartlett was slammed by the Transgender community for suggesting there was an epidemic of kids being brainwashed into transitioning, and later regretting it.

4 people came forward to complain about the use of their online images to imply they regretted transitioning. An online petition against their inclusion currently stands at over 53,000 signatures.

Seven later issued an apology for mistakenly using one transgender woman.

It isn’t clear if Spotlight has removed all the images of those who complained about being included.

As Mitch McTaggart yesterday remarked in his Last Year of Television special, Spotlight interviewed three people who regretted transitioning, including one American, Chloe Cole, who transitioned at 15. However the programme did not make clear that in Australia such surgery is not legal until the age of 18.

Vice Media also noted anti-trans hate was “rising in Australia because of reports like Seven’s Spotlight.” It noted a survey claiming 1 in 2 trans Australians has experienced some form of hate in the last 12 months and 1 in 6 had experienced violence.

Frankly, if Seven wanted a Spotlight special to see out 2023, it might well have used its John Farnham episode in which music and nostalgia might have been a better fit for the occasion?

Just without the Hey Hey footage of Farnsy singing with Tom Jones perhaps, currently the centre of another legal fracas…

22 Responses

  1. This is a genuine story, Seven just should have got it’s permission correct before airing it.

    The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists has recently advised caution as there is limited high-quality evidence to back up claims. It urges a variety of treatment options, caution in the use of hormonal treatments and surgery ensuring that screening for ASD and ADHD are properly carried out before diagnose and treatment. The Australian Psycologial Society is revising it’s policy too. The UK and other countries have also abanaded the unquestioning Affirmative Care model pioneered in Australia by the Royal Children’s Hostipal, after their claims of accuracy in diagnosis have been disputed. Both treating and not not treating can have bad out comes.

  2. Seven had already altered their plans before this story was published. Seven is ringing in the new year with the movie ‘New Year’s Eve’ – Spotlight out in Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne and Adelaide

  3. I’m going to give another side or story for another aspect, which I had posted in the TV Lounge earlier this year. Earlier this year, Rage had programmed Roisin Murphy on a Sunday or Monday show that was not a guest programming. Given what was said by Roisin about transgender, and that Roisin may or may not have been shadowbanned by BBC and other organisations, would that have been an an endorsement of the views or comments by ABC?

    I’ve seen on SBS, there are disclaimers for foreign news broadcasts, expressing that the content or views are not endorsed by SBS. I’ve seen similar disclaimers elsewhere as well.

          1. Okay, fair enough. I guess the question should be asked is if whether Seven or Spotlight endorse the views expressed in the program, considering the potential effect of broadcasting content that appears to endorse certain people and stances.

          2. P.S I respect David’s view and I take David’s view as the last say out of respect, whether it be agreeing with Andrew in this article.

  4. What an absolute disgrace.
    Mitch McTaggart quite rightly skewered this abhorrent piece of “journalism” in his excellent review of the latest year of garbage television (although he also gave kudos where due).
    Seven should be ashamed of themselves for this hateful, dangerous piece of media, not basking in a repeat broadcast.

  5. Seems like an odd decision , but I doubt many people will watch it. Most aren’t interested in anti trans hit pieces or poor trans people follow ups in the culture war.

  6. What a festive way to bring in the new year, re-running a trashy debunked piece of journalism??!? I know NYE TV is usually very ordinary, but that is quite a new low!

    Oh well, I suppose for “balance” Channel Nine will give us the camp fest that is the annual Can’t Stop The Music airing.

  7. Calling it a “tacky” programming move is being too kind to Seven. I would be using more colourful words about their transphobic programmers. But Seven has form in this area. Look at Home and Away for example: very little lgbtiq+ representation on that show over the years, even editing out a same-sex kiss, which they got slammed for. Compare that with Neighbours, with multiple current and past gay and trans characters.

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