"Defamatory" tweeting befuddles newspaper

The Australian newspaper is umming and ahhing over whether it should sue someone over some tweets about its beloved Editor-in-Chief, Chris Mitchell.

Mitchell, said that he would sue journalism academic Julie Posetti over tweets where she quoted a former reporter for The Australian.

The former hack Asa Wahlquist was quoted as saying that Mitchell ordered topics like climate change to be covered in a particular way in the lead up to the election.

Posetti quoted Wahlquist who was speaking at a journalism conference in Sydney as saying that “in the lead up to the election the Ed in Chief was increasingly telling me what to write”.

Last week Mitchell fumed that the tweets were a lie and Wahlquist had denied saying the words in the tweets. It looked like Australia’s first tweet defamation case was all set to run.

However over the weekend it looks like the story is changing Wahlquist is now saying that the comments were been taken out of context.

In an article published on the Australian’s website on Tuesday, the paper admits that Posetti’s tweets were “a fair summary of what Wahlquist said”.

It still claims that the tweets were defamatory. A newspaper spokesman said that and Mitchell says that Posetti did not contact him to get his side of the story. Although if she was covering a public meeting we would not have thought she would have needed to do so, although it would have been polite.

Writing on her bog Posetti said her University has not received any communication from Mitchell and she has been asked not to comment further.