Saints’ Terminator strategy on #Dickileaks backfiring big-time
The St Kilda Football Club’s “search and destroy” mission in response to the Dickileaks scandal has wrought extensive collateral damage, not least to the reputations of its players, the Club and the AFL at large.
By engaging in the public relations of personal destruction — targeting an extremely silly teenage girl as if she were the leader of terrorist cell, or a Bond villain — the Saints created a media monster way past their capacity to tame. Instead of acknowledging the embarrassment, taking the pain and seeking to move on, every move the club made has had the effect of inflaming the story. Its legal strategy created media-friendly courtroom set pieces which drove coverage for several news cycles. Its media conferences created pictures and soundbites that propelled the story forward. Its campaign of vilification created a media sensation in the form of the “Saint’s Teen”. By going all Terminator, the Saints have created in her a John Connor character that will taunt them for many weeks and months to come.
Coverage like this in today’s Age is only possible because St Kilda has so inexplicably elevated the story far beyond where it should have been.
In its haste and fury, the Club’s misguided attempts to protect at all costs the tender egos and sexual secrets of its precious players would make the Vatican proud.