ABC’s Media Watch host Paul Barry attacks journalist Shane Dowling, on behalf of himself and Kerry Stokes’ Channel Seven and Seven West Media, for reporting the truth

ABC’s Media Watch host Paul Barry has been exposed telling lies, failing all journalistic standards and the ABC’s charter while attacking fugitive Australian journalist Shane Dowling (me) on Monday night’s show (11/10/21) on behalf of himself and Kerry Stokes’ Channel Seven and Seven West Media. What has clearly upset Paul Barry is 2 articles that Shane Dowling has published about Paul Barry using the Media Watch show to support alleged paedophiles Cardinal George Pell and Alan Jones and disgraced former magistrate Rodney Higgins who had a sexual relationship with a 23-year-old court employee.

Paul Barry went on a personal rant with no evidence saying, in relation to Shane Dowling, “much of what he puts on his site is defamatory nonsense”, but Paul Barry failed to identify one article he regards as “defamatory nonsense” and he also refused to even name this website so viewers could easily find it and decide for themselves. Add that to Mr Barry’s refusal to give me an opportunity to respond and Mr Barry has breached most of the processes and procedures that he attacks other journalists for failing to adhere to by when they publish stories.

Paul Barry failed to name one article or this website because he didn’t want to give his own viewers the opportunity to make up their own minds about his defamatory attack on me and this website. Given Paul Barry mentioned Kerry Stokes and the arrest warrant issued against me Mr Barry could have and should have mentioned and/or quoted from recent articles I have published on the matter. For example the article published on the 5th of September titled “Arrest warrant issued for Queensland journalist Shane Dowling by the NSW Supreme Court on behalf of Kerry Stokes’ Seven Network and Seven West Media” (Click here to read)

Below is the YouTube video I published (16/10/21) with an overview and further information in relation to this article. 

(Click anywhere on the above video to watch)

Another example is the article I published on the 9th of September titled “Seven’s directors Kerry Stokes, Ryan Stokes, James Warburton and Bruce McWilliam caught lying to the media about stitching up journalist Shane Dowling for jail”. (Click here to read) These articles give my side of the story and the ABC under their charter have an obligation to give both sides of the story but the ABC and Paul Barry obviously didn’t want their viewers to know my side of the story which is the truth about what is really happening.

Most of Paul Barry’s Media Watch show is about journalists failing to meet journalistic standards and that is exactly what Paul Barry did with his hit piece on me. Why? Because if he names my website and or any article Mr Barry’s viewers would quickly realise that Barry’s allegation that “much of what he puts on his site is defamatory nonsense” is clearly a defamatory statement by Paul Barry. Also, Mr Barry’s greatest fear would be that readers find the 2 recent articles that I have published about him and Media Watch which I will expand more on below.

Paul Barry said on Media Watch on Monday night (11/10/21):

And if politicians have to go after individual trolls there are thousands to deal with, many have next to no money and some will never pipe down:

SHANE DOWLING: G’day, Shane Dowling here …

Now, I just want to do a quick video on the real reasons New South Wales deputy premier John Barilaro’s resigned.

– Kangaroo Court of Australia, 4 October, 2021

Shane Dowling’s been sued for defamation several times, jailed twice for criminal contempt and now faces a third stint in the clanger after setting up anonymous websites to publish defamatory material on Kerry Stokes and his business interests.

And even though much of what he puts on his site is defamatory nonsense he keeps on publishing it.

So don’t believe politicians who tell you trolls can be stopped. (Click here to see on the Media Watch website)

It’s worth noting Media Watch name my website in their transcript on their website as the source, as copied above, but Paul Barry refused to name this website in his show.

Monday nights Media Watch segment where I am mentioned at the end is titled ‘Coward’s palace’ and is about Scott Morrison and Barnaby Joyce’s stated goal and attempt to regulate social media but Paul Barry doesn’t criticise them for that only saying that they couldn’t succeed so the bottom line is that Paul Barry has supported Scott Morrison and Barnaby Joyce’s stated goal from a moral and ethical viewpoint.  I published an article a few days ago on the issue titled “Scott Morrison and Barnaby Joyce declare war on social media users but not politicians who run troll accounts” which starts off:

Scott Morrison and Barnaby Joyce have declared war on anonymous social media users but not politicians who run troll accounts to attack voters and push propaganda while at the same Liberal Party and National Party politicians have hit an all-time high for instituting frivolous and vexatious defamation cases which has the effect of forcing many social media users to stay anonymous. (Click here to read more)

Paul Barry and Media Watch missed key points that are embarrassing to Morrison and Joyce and instead Barry used his program to attack “trolls” on behalf of Scott Morrison, Barnaby Joyce and the establishment.

Two previous articles that expose Paul Barry and Media Watch

Paul Barry had an obligation to at least mention the 2 recent articles that I have written about him and Media Watch as they make it even more obvious why he did a hit piece on me and this website as payback. But Mr Barry failed to let his viewers know about the 2 articles. On the 19th of November 2020 I published an article titled “ABC’s Media Watch and host Paul Barry try to rebirth the reputation of disgraced Cardinal George Pell” which starts off:

ABC’s Media Watch and host Paul Barry posted a story which was clearly and deliberately biased in favour of Cardinal George Pell, and I have no doubt it was an attempt to rebirth Pell’s severely tarnished reputation. I emailed a complaint to Media Watch and received a response as per below and then escalated the issue to a formal complaint to the ABC.

The story was also in breach of the ABC’s charter which says the ABC is meant to be impartial and present a diversity of perspectives.

Below is what it says on the ABC’s website:


The ABC has a statutory duty to ensure that the gathering and presentation of news and information is impartial according to the recognised standards of objective journalism.

Aiming to equip audiences to make up their own minds is consistent with the public service character of the ABC. A democratic society depends on diverse sources of reliable information and contending opinions. A broadcaster operating under statute with public funds is legitimately expected to contribute in ways that may differ from commercial media, which are free to be partial to private interests. (Click here to read more and see on the ABC’s website)

I emailed a compliant to Media Watch on the 12 of November 2020 as per the below email:

Sent: 12 November 2020 11:15
To: Media Watch
Subject: Media Watch’s biased reporting on George Pell – Media bites 5th November 2020

Dear Sir/Madam

I would like to make a formal complaint regarding Media Watch’s blatantly biased reporting on George Pell which was broadcast on Twitter and your website in the Media Bites segment on the 5th November 2020.

Media Watch host Paul Barry attacked the ABC for referring to George Pell as a “Disgraced Cardinal” which Mr Barry said the ABC had now apologised given Pell’s convictions were overturned by the High Court of Australia.

But George Pell is a “Disgraced Cardinal” given the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse found that George Pell’s evidence in the witness stand under oath was “implausible”, “inconceivable” or “not tenable” in relation to his involvement in covering up paedophile priests and moving them from parish to parish where they abused more children etc.

Given the Royal Commission found George Pell’s evidence in numerous instances was “implausible”, “inconceivable” or “not tenable” it is easily arguable that it means George Pell committed perjury as well.

But Media Watch’s Paul Barry made no mention of the Royal Commission’s findings about Pell which shows Paul Barry was not balanced and is in effect trying to rebirth George Pell’s reputation by deliberately failing to acknowledge the findings of the Royal Commission when discussing Pell’s reputation.

The information on George Pell and the Royal Commission’s finding on him generated widespread media reporting in May 2020 which was also reported widely by the ABC so it is not believable that Paul Barry and staff at Media Watch did not know about it. For example, this article here: History will not be kind to George Pell, as royal commission reveals its secret findings by the ABC’s Louise Milligan.

Many survivors watching the show would have felt disgusted in the blatant bias of Media Watch and Paul Barry. (Click here to read the full email and article)

Media Watch responded to my email:

Media Watch responded to my above email with:

From: Media Watch
Sent: 12 November 2020 11:36
Subject: RE: Media Watch’s biased reporting on George Pell – Media bites 5th November 2020

Hi Shane,

Thanks for the feedback.

We’re aware there are a range of views around George Pell, and indeed those royal commission findings.

But the Cardinal has not been convicted of any crime. That is why, I presume, the ABC offered a correction.

The segment was not offering any comment on the character of the Cardinal, good or bad. Our critique was of the use of the descriptor “disgraced” and acknowledging that the ABC had corrected it.

Note, this response is not for publication but a reply to your personal complaint.

If you’re unsatisfied with this response you’re able to file a complaint with the ABC formally where it will be assessed independently of our program.

Thanks again,

End of email

They start off by admitting that “We’re aware there are a range of views around George Pell, and indeed those royal commission findings.” So, why didn’t they put those “range of views” and the “royal commission findings” in the story as they are meant to do as per the ABC charter?

I like how they say “Note, this response is not for publication but a reply to your personal complaint.” I didn’t publish the person’s name who replied on behalf of Media Watch because I am sure they are not the decision-maker but they shouldn’t be responding to other media’s complaints and telling them “this response is not for publication” because as you can see I didn’t comply nor should I. (Click here to read the full article)

Why didn’t Paul Barry mention on Monday night (11/10/21) that I had written the above article about Paul Barry and Media Watch which they clearly knew about given the email correspondence that I had with them? Because the above extract from the article published in November last year would make it obvious to most people why Paul Barry did a hit piece on me as payback. But there’s more. On the 18th of June 2021 I published an article titled “Did 68-year-old Magistrate Rodney Higgins murder his 23-year-old lover Ashleigh Petrie so he could claim her $180,000 death benefit?” which starts off:

Magistrate Rodney Higgins, who is clearly unfit to be a magistrate, has in effect stolen the $180,000 superannuation death benefit of his deceased former partner, Ashleigh Petrie, that should have gone to Ms Petrie’s mother. This fact put together with conflicting evidence given to a Media Watch show that was aired on the 4th of November 2019, as per the video below, has to raise the real possibility that Magistrate Rodney Higgins could have murdered Ashleigh Petrie or had some involvement in her death.

The Age reported on Thursday (17/6/21):

Magistrate Rodney Higgins, who created controversy in 2019 by embarking on a relationship with a court clerk 45 years his junior, has successfully claimed her $180,000 superannuation death benefit even though it was bequeathed to her struggling mother.

Mr Higgins, who earns $324,000 a year as a magistrate in Bendigo, made the successful claim on the death benefits of his late fiance Ashleigh Petrie after the fund, Rest Super, agreed with his argument that he was her de facto partner and therefore her “dependent”.

But the payout has been delayed because lawyers for Ms Petrie’s mother, whom The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald have chosen not to name to protect her privacy, have been fighting the decision for 15 months. They have appealed the super fund’s position to the Australian Financial Complaints Authority.

Mr Higgins, then 68, and Ms Petrie were a couple for seven months and lived together for about four months prior to her death. They were engaged in September 2019. During her relationship with Mr Higgins, Ms Petrie nominated her mother as the beneficiary of her superannuation and life insurance.

And the article goes on to say:

Below is the Media Watch show on the 4th of November 2019

In the video Magistrate Rodney Higgins gives a different version of events regarding Ashleigh Petrie’s mindset which might not have meant a great deal at the time but is very relevant now given he was the last person to see her alive before she was hit by a car and given he benefited financially from her death.

(To watch on the Media Watch website click here)

On a side note: Paul Barry attacked the media in the story which is fine but why was he so soft on Magistrate Rodney Higgins? Paul Barry also needs to explain why he did a story of a predator like Rodney Higgins having a sexual relationship with a young female staff member and then ending the Media Watch show with a quote from sexual predator Alan Jones who has also been having a sexual relationship with his young male employee for numerous years. I published an article in March 2020 titled “Alan Jones’s 22-year-old boyfriend Jake Thrupp sends a legal threat to journalist.” (Click here to read more)

Magistrate Rodney Higgins told Media Watch in the video: “that Ashleigh suffered from depression and anxiety and had told him recently she was “in a dark place”. But he was also adamant the media coverage was a factor in her death.

She was a lovely, young, fragile, impressionable girl. I have no doubt at all that the Herald Sun and Daily Mail articles tipped her over the top. – Phone interview, Rodney Higgins, 1 November, 2019 (Click here to read the full article)

Interesting how Paul Barry’s Media Watch will ring a grub like Rodney Higgins and give him an opportunity to respond with a soft interview but refused to give me an opportunity to respond or quote directly from my website.

And for some unexplained reason Paul Barry will criticise Alan Jones but also on a regular basis quote from Jones giving him credit when he shouldn’t be as I pointed out above. Paul Barry has always been a big George Pell supporter and continues to do so as I pointed out above. Paul Barry is well and truly aware of the articles that I have written about him, but he failed to point that out to his viewers.

Kerry Stokes, Channel 7 and Seven West Media

Paul Barry said on Media Watch: “Shane Dowling’s been sued for defamation several times, jailed twice for criminal contempt and now faces a third stint in the clanger after setting up anonymous websites to publish defamatory material on Kerry Stokes and his business interests.”

Why does Paul Barry say “Dowling’s been sued for defamation several times” but not mention that I have only ever been sued by Kerry Stokes and his associated companies such as Seven and Capilano Honey? Paul Barry could have also mentioned that Kerry Stokes has a long history of suing many people including in the infamous C7 matter where Seven sued 22 other parties on Stokes’ orders and that cost Seven $200 million after the lost.

And why does Paul Barry say “Kerry Stokes and his business interests” and not mention Seven Network and Seven West Media who are he ones that instituted and paid for the contempt proceedings against me? Surely the fact that old media companies like Seven are having a new media journalist, who has a history of writing about corruption at Seven, jailed would be of interest to Media Watch viewers.

But there is no need to go past the fact that a few weeks ago Kerry Stokes and other directors lied to a journalist via email saying that Seven was not a party to the matter when they clearly are which is consistent with Paul Barry not naming the Seven Network and Seven West Media by just staying “Kerry Stokes and his business interests”. I wrote in the article mentioned above on the 9th of September:

Seven West Media’s directors have been caught lying to the media about Seven’s involvement in having journalist Shane Dowling (me) stitched up for 10 months jail. Bruce McWilliam, as per the below email to the True Crimes News Weekly website which McWilliam cc’d to Kerry Stokes, Ryan Stokes and SWM CEO James Warburton, claimed Seven were not a party to the proceedings so they could not comment which is a blatant lie. The reason for the lie is unknown but they are obviously very worried.

For directors of a publicly listed company to make deliberately false public statements would have to be a breach of their fiduciary duties and it is something the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) and Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) should be looking at. And I suspect shareholders and advertisers would be very concerned as well.

If the Seven Network and Seven West Media had legitimately had me charged with contempt for publishing their secret material, they would want everyone to know as a warning to others. But instead, Seven’s Directors are lying to the media about their involvement, as they know how corrupt it was and they have a lot to hide. (Click here to read more)

Paul Barry would have been aware of Seven’s lies about being involved with the contempt matter he mentioned so why is Paul Barry pushing lies and propaganda on behalf of Kerry Stokes and Seven?

In summary:

  1. Paul Barry failed to get a response from me.
  2. Paul Barry failed to name my website.
  3. Paul Barry failed to declare that I had written 2 recent articles about him and Media Watch where I was very critical of their conduct.
  4. Paul Barry failed to identify any article when he said “much of what he puts on his site is defamatory nonsense”.
  5. Paul Barry mentioned that I have been “jailed twice for criminal contempt and now faces a third stint in the clanger” but he failed to mention that I publish a judicial corruption website and that I have named over a dozen NSW Supreme Court judges as being corrupt and that is the same court that has jailed me. That should worry every Australian.
  6. Paul Barry failed to name the Seven Network and Seven West Media as being the ones who had me charged with contempt. That is consistent with Kerry Stokes an Seven lying to a journalist about being a party to the matter which seems to suggest Seven told Mr Barry not to name the Seven Network and Seven West Media. So did Paul Barry give Seven an opportunity to comment? If that is the case why didn’t Paul Barry give me a chance to comment?
  7. Paul Barry breached the ABC ‘s editorial charter for balanced and fair reporting.
  8. It doesn’t matter whether you agree with what I write or not what you should agree with is that Paul Barry and the ABC need to explain why was I not treated the same as they treat other journalists they criticise every week on the Media Watch program?

I could go on and I am sure you can think of many other examples of Paul Barry and Media Watch failing in their report regarding the allegations made against me. The positive about Paul Barry’s hit piece on me is that it was so blatant it would be obvious to most fair-minded people how corrupt he is and how he is using his program as a propaganda unit for others as much as he accuses other media companies of doing.

Please use Twitter, Facebook, email and the other buttons below and help promote this article.

Kangaroo Court of Australia is an independent website and is reliant on donations to keep publishing so please click on the Patreon button below and support independent journalism.

If you would like to support via PayPal use the button below or for other donation options click here to go to the Donations page.

Thank you for your support.

For the KCA t-shirt shop click here.

Follow Kangaroo Court of Australia via email. Enter your email address below and click on the follow button.

9 replies »

  1. The rapid decline of the ABC, down to the lowest depths of Sky and the ilk of Bolt and Jones, Barry’s past quality investigative journalism skills in era of Bond and Skase have lapsed to gutter journalism befitting the direction of their LNP masters and supporting their cronies, overall quality of ABC fail the minority that carry out impartial investigations.
    Just a matter of time whereas the last few impartial journalists at ABC are forced out.
    Remember the run up to Abbots election win?
    “We will not reduce funding to ABC/SBS”
    ABC News and now SBS World News just mouthpieces for LNP propaganda, Media Watch excels at double standards and not worth watching..the decline of ABC…

  2. It seems in the thin, rarefied air of the media/government in Australia, being aquitted of a crime by the High Court of Australia – as was Pell – means you are automatically not guilty of any findings by a Royal Commission, no matter how unrelated the findings were to the acquittal.

  3. So pleased that you have done so much homework on these crooked people. I say people because from Government to news to judges to well the lot of them. The government tells the Journalist what to say, the judges how to rule, they are all in each other’s pockets, and the more you dig the dirtier it gets. Australia has fallen into corruption and it started years ago, and the river runs so deep it is sad. If you say to much the government makes sure you are dealt with. I am sure you have uncovered more than you have published, and once you know the truth you can’t un-see things. Because corruption is so deep here, all of the officials need to go, time to wipe the slate clean and start again. You are a gem in the ruff. Many thanks for all your exposure, things are cracking and all will benefit soon.

  4. As written on the shared article on the KCA Facebook page:

    Marius Gleeson

    Issue I have with this is that it wasn’t a ‘media watch’ episode but a political opinion piece on what Barry and the ABC see as ‘trolls’.

    Also the primary example he uses, being Shane, is actually the exact opposite of what the government is proposing to combat.

    Shane is not anonymous, putting his face, name, location etc online.

    He is also not operating with impunity as he has been charged with the offenses Barry describes in detail.

    Using Shane as an example is what you’d normally expect Media Watch to expose as poor journalism with personal bias. Shane is the exact opposite of who the government is targeting.

    So why would Barry choose to focus on Shane rather than the uncountable, nameless actual trolls that spew real hatred and spiteful vitriol that is found on Twitter daily? These guys, for right or wrong, are the focus of the governments attention.

    I don’t necessarily always agree with Shane, Barry etc but this was a real hack piece.


  5. Not surprising at all. The government has installed Murdoch stooges on the board, including a former Foxtel executive, and these people are more than happy to parrot the government’s narrative. As a result, the ABC is slowly transforming into Sky News v2.0.

  6. I seem to remember Media Watch having a great deal of integrity, since 1989 when I believe it commenced. It was a great barometer for checking in snapshot form, “where we were at” as a society and community. It has unfortunately however – gone down the gurgler.

    You cannot now rely on it as a sure thing. Very disappointing really. Infact it is very sad indeed.

    What needs to happen to bring it back to some semblance of reliability?

Leave a Reply