Mamamia’s Tone Deaf Controversy

Mia Freedman later issued an apology that still missed the point

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crowdink.com, crowdink.com.au, crowd ink, crowdink, Mia Freedman and Roxane Gay tweet (Image Source: cataloguemagazine)
Mia Freedman and Roxane Gay tweet (Image Source: cataloguemagazine)

Controversy has set upon Mamamia’s Mia Freedman, founder of the site, after she published a podcast interview and description with American feminist author Roxane Gay, where she wondered if her guest would “fit into the office lift?”

Needless to say, this upset a lot of people, particularly Gay, who tweeted her displeasure with Mamamia, saying, “I am appalled by Mamamia. It was a shit show. I can walk a fucking mile”, ““Can she fit into the lift?” Shame on you @Mamamia”, and “It was cruel and humiliating” (all via @rgay).

Also upset by Freedman’s comment, Courtney Robinson similarly tweeted about it, saying, “Oh Mamamia. When good intentions just do so much damage… this is appalling”— @courtney_ro

In the aftermath of this controversy, Freedman issued an apology to express how “mortified” she is over the backlash, but some people are suggesting still misses the point of why her comment was unnecessary and cruel.

In her apology, she says, “We are huge Roxane Gay fans and supporters at Mamamia. It was an honour to welcome the best-selling author and professor into our offices last month to record a podcast interview,

“In no way did Mamamia ever intend to make Roxane Gay feel disrespected”, she continued, “and we apologise unequivocally that that was the unintended consequence, including to her publishing team who organised the visit…”.

To read Freedman’s full apology, published on mamamia.com, click here.

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Rowena Nagy is a graduate of The University of Tasmania and has over three years of experience as a writer and journalist and brings that knowledge and skill to all tasks she approaches. She has also worked in radio, co-hosting and co-producing a news and current affairs program during her Bachelor of Arts Degree and received a second-class lower division score for her Honours thesis on celebrity, media, and privacy. Rowena aims to gain experience in all areas of media and has high career aspirations.