Rebecca Quilliam

Rebecca Quilliam is senior reporter at the APNZ News Service office in Wellington.

Edge DJ sorry over X Factor child rape tweet

Dominic Harvey. Photo/Greg Bowker
Dominic Harvey. Photo/Greg Bowker

Radio DJ Dominic Harvey is continuing to field a backlash - even from his wife - about a tweet that connected child rape with a New Zealand X Factor contestant failing to progress to the next stage.

In an apparent reference to the Once Were Warriors film, during the programme last night, The Edge's Morning Madhouse host wrote "Poor Gracie! First molested in her own bed by uncle bully. And now kicked out of #xfactornz", after contestant Grace Ikanasio failed to make it through to the next round.

The tweet didn't win the shock jock many friends, with even his wife and fellow radio host Jay-Jay Feeney tweeting: "I love my husband @DomHarvey but I do not always share his views. He is his own person."

Harvey's tweet prompted a barrage of complaints, including one person who said that as a victim of child rape, his tweet made her feel physically ill.

The radio host apologised for the tweet, but not before an online spat with comedian Rose Matafeo who asked her 6000 followers to stop following his twitter feed because of his profile picture which shows him saying to women: "Apologise? What the hell for?".

"Hey, here's a pro tip: go to Dom Harvey's account, check out his profile pic and unfollow him if you haven't already."

He replied by tweeting: "There is this Kiwi who calls herself a `comedian' who is asking her small pocket of followers to unfollow me. This may be her best joke ever."

Harvey also defended his tweet by posting: "I suspect Grace knows she is not that person who played the role of Grace in a fictional film."

However, he later deleted the tweet and today posted: "I have deleted a tweet I wrote last night. It was supposed to be funny. On reflection, it was not. Sorry for any offence caused."

A Mediaworks spokeswoman said the matter had been dealt with through Harvey's apology.

"That's his Twitter account and not an official Mediaworks line - obviously it's not a statement we would endorse...but we're certainly satisfied with the way Dom has amended and apologised on the social media network."

She did not believe they had received any complaints about the tweet.

The Broadcasting Standards Authority said because it was not something he had said on air, the issue fell outside its scope.

But tweeters voiced their displeasure directly to the radio star following its posting.

One tweeter, crystal-cooper tweeted: "Such a shame that @DomHarvey is letting down the side for @TheEdgeNZ everyone else is super funny and not misogynist dickheads!"

Another tweeter, @stamspo wrote ''@DomHarvey yes because joking about a real problem that many face is so crack up!!!!!!!!!!! and hilarious!!!!!! wow!!!!!!''

Others called for sponsors to pull out of advertising on the radio station, with one tweeting: "As I see it, the only way @TheEdgeNZ does anything about Dom Harvey is if sponsors start pulling out, so that's who you should be pressuring."

Ikanasio was due to appear on the radio station this morning and on its twitter feed. The Edge called for fans of the show to vote for her as a wildcard entry to get back into the competition.

Last month Harvey was accused of sexism for a tweet which said it was hardly ever a good idea for women to rap.

Harvey tweeted his views about women rapping while watching the auditions for The X-Factor NZ.

"Girls rapping. Hardly ever a good idea," he said.

The tweet sparked a flood of criticism, with many people calling it sexist and out-of-touch.

Kiwi rapper Coco Solid called for people to let The Edge know Harvey's tweet was offensive in a post on her Facebook page.

- APNZ

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