The price of a front page. Some months ago, the media ran reports that Daniel Mallia, a youth worker with Les Twentyman’s 20th Man Fund, was stabbed by a gang of Pacific Islanders on Altona Beach. This was later found out to be a fabrication by Mallia, who had been described as a “ticking time bomb” and who had struggled to perform his job. It was intimated that he’d inflicted the wounds on himself to gain “credibility” as a youth worker.

He was charged with making a false police report and faced the Sunshine Magistrates Court on December 13. His employment as a youth worker was, of course, terminated. On the January 12, the Herald Sun published this front page.

In the days following the publication of the story, Mallia was fired from his new employment in the Northern Territory. The day after the Herald Sun published its story, Mallia called the Hobsons Bay Weekly. In tears, he claimed that he couldn’t leave the house for reporters on his doorstep, that the Herald Sun had invented many of his statements regarding “street cred”, and that he’d be soon be homeless.

Today, the Hobsons Bay Weekly reported that Mallia was found dead in his car on Stirling Street, Footscray. He appears to have died of a drug overdose. — Mike Stuchbery (read the rest of the article here)

Occupying inboxes. Occupy Melbourne may no longer occupy the City Square but they still send out occasional press releases, with the latest sent out January 12. Annoyingly, the email addresses weren’t placed in the BCC section, resulting in a heady mix of email addresses being displayed of Occupiers, journalists and media organisations.

After a certain Crikey staff member “replied all” to the latest press release, noting how public all the addresses were, several journos replied saying that they’d unsucessfully tried to be removed from the mailing list. One noted that she’d even taking to blocking the Occupy Melbourne emails.

A graffiti artist in Brisbane — and we hazard to guess, also an Occupy supporter (we’d confirm but he hasn’t answered our calls) — replied with a pithy:

“Yo [journalist’s name]

Go neck ya self ya troll..

To think you work in journalism…”

Obviously the email blocking hadn’t worked entirely as the journalist in question then replied to everyone again noting that she’d contacted the Australian Communications and Media Authority, the Victoria Police and the Australian Federal Police and that police were investigating the “go neck ya self ya troll” matter further.

As she wrote:

“I suggest that if anyone has an issue with being on this Occupy Melbourne mailing list, you get in contact with the very helpful people over at ACMA or police, who were kind enough to explain to me that the abusive email and any further unwanted emails from Occupy Melbourne or others can result in charges being laid — I believe the correct term is ‘using a telecommunications device to harass or annoy’.”

We expect police to be breaking up press releases any day now. — Amber Jamieson

Front page of the day. The Guardian leads with the News of the World damages payout to 37 victims — including celebrities — in another unwelcome scandal for New International:

The Department of Corrections. It was nice of yesterday’s Sydney Morning Herald to do its part in contributing to teenager angst …

How News hid the phone-hacking scandal

“A high court judge said the Murdoch-owned company behind the News of the World had made “an admission of sorts” that it engaged in a deliberate cover-up of evidence relating to phone hacking, on the day that the publisher paid an estimated seven figures in damages to settle 37 phone-hacking claims brought by public figures ranging from Jude Law to John Prescott.” — The Guardian

TV network worked for months to get Gingrich interview

“The television interview of Marianne Gingrich, a former wife of Newt Gingrich, that will be broadcast on Thursday night was initiated back in November, when ABC News was looking into an old federal investigation that involved the family.” — The New York Times

‘Choppergate’ case before Fair Work Australia

“Former Channel Nine reporter Melissa Mallet has told Fair Work Australia that she did not know that that her location would be falsely reported in the now-infamous ‘Choppergate’ scandal of 2011.” — TV Tonight

Cycling fans mobilise against Nine coverage

“Angry cycling fans have mobilised to protest against what they describe as the Nine Network’s ‘appalling’ coverage of the Tour Down Under, the biggest race on the Australian road cycling calendar, since it nabbed the broadcast rights to the event from SBS last year.” — The Australian

Ten CEO James Warburton: David Mott is the best

“Ten CEO James Warburton has used his first public appearance to issue a vote of confidence in programming boss David Mott, describing him as ‘the best in the business’.” — mUmBRELLA