Stan Grant exposes the ABC for selecting guests on Q+A to stoke conflict and ignite social media ‘lynch mob’

Stan Grant exposes the ABC for selecting guests on Q+A to stoke conflict and ignite social media ‘lynch mob’

  • Ex-Q+A host tears into the show
  • Accuses it of stoking division 

Stan Grant has torn into the ABC show he used to host, claiming Q+A panel members are primarily chosen to spark conflict and that viewers are encouraged to form a ‘lynch mob’ on social media.

Grant, a Wiradjuri, Gurrawin and Dharawal man, quit Q+A in May after being subjected to ‘relentless racial filth’ after appearing on a panel discussing colonialism ahead of King Charles’ Coronation. 

He accused the ABC of ‘institutional failure’ and claimed no one in management offered him support.

Now, the television presenter has turned his guns on the format of Q+A, slamming the show of stoking divisions and whipping up hate, rather than ‘seeking connection’.

Stan Grant (pictured) has torn into the ABC show he used to host, accusing Q+A of stoking division and whipping up lynch mobs 

Stan Grant is pictured with wife Tracey Holmes

Stan Grant is pictured with wife Tracey Holmes

‘You go on Q+A and the first thing you do is you introduce a panel that have more often than not been picked because they have conflict, rather than seeking to find connection,’ Grant told the Canberra Writers Festival on Saturday, according to The Australian. 

‘Then you say, ‘go on social media’, basically form your lynch mob, hit the person you hate and pile on.

‘I can’t do that anymore and I don’t think that is what you want from our media. I think we are failing you and we must find a better way to doing it.’

The format of Q+A involves bringing in five panel members who often share differing views to discuss the key issues of the day and take questions from audience members. 

‘Q+A brings you lively debate and unpredictable moments as we put questions from the audience to the panel to get you answers on the issues that matter to Australians,’ the show’s blurb says on I-view. 

Grant, who remains on paid leave from the ABC, said on Saturday that he was partly to blame for Q+A’s perceived problems.

‘I have to accept our own complicity in this,’ he said.

‘One of the reasons that I walked away from being in the media and walked away from Q+A was not just because of the racism pile-on against my family and the violent threats against us, but because I had to accept that I am part of that ecosystem.’

Grant also criticised some of the reporting of long-running crime issues in the Northern Territory and said there is still ‘a narrative that we are to blame’.

‘We saw it with the recent stories in Alice Springs, the kids were to blame. Now people have a right to live in safety. You don’t want your windows smashed or your shop looted or your car overturned,’ he said.

‘What we often see instead is a punitive approach, that makes greater incarceration, greater institutionalisation, rather than dealing with the fundamental things.’

The TV presenter said decreased funding for Indigenous Australians had contributed to the problems in those areas. 

In the wake of Grant’s departure as host, Q+A has stopped using its X (formerly Twitter) account.

ABC’s managing director previously claimed the platform was exposing journalists to ‘toxic interactions’. 

Last month, the ABC revealed Grant would not be retuning to host Q+A.

Two days later, the show’s boss, executive producer Erin Vincent, also revealed she was leaving the show.