As part of the settlement of disciplinary action taken against me by Deakin University on an allegation of “serious misconduct”, I am pleased to be able to publish the following agreed statement.
On 15 and 16 April 2014 two articles were published on the Herald Sun webpage that included tweets I had posted. In those tweets I used inappropriate and offensive language, including profanity. My behaviour was then linked to my profession, as an Associate Professor in Journalism at Deakin University.
There has since been commentary about this being a matter of academic freedom; however, this has not been the University’s position and I agree that this is not at issue here as the University remains steadfastly committed to the principles of academic freedom. Their concern was not with any robust, critical enquiry, but rather with the inappropriate and offensive language I used which was not consistent with Deakin’s Code of Conduct.
I am remorseful for my actions, and for the impact they have had on Deakin University. I apologise unequivocally for my poor judgment and for any reputational harm caused to any individual and to the good name of Deakin.
I am pleased that the University continues to acknowledge my standing and expertise as an Associate Professor in Journalism, which is not in question. I look forward to continuing with my work at Deakin and to supporting the Deakin journalism program and students.
You can read my earlier statement about this matter, if you wish to.
At this time I am making no further public comment.