The Age newspaper has been forced to apologise over a “stuff-up” after it ran a half-page advertisement commiserating AFL premiers, the Western Bulldogs, over their apparent grand final loss.
Two versions of the post-grand final ad were prepared ahead of time for the Victoria University, which is a major sponsor of the Bulldogs.
The Age ran the wrong one — mistakenly describing the grand final as a disappointing loss.
“In spite of the disappointment of the Grand Final loss, the Bulldogs showed incredible heart and sportsmanship until the final siren, led by skipper and VU student Easton Wood,” the ad said.
Editor-in-chief Mark Forbes told Macquarie Radio the university would be offered a refund.
“It’s a stuff-up,” he said.
“There’s no way around that, and certainly, apologies to Victoria University.
“I suppose the only positive for them was it shows they were sticking by the Bulldogs in victory or defeat.”
— The Age (@theage) October 2, 2016
Mr Forbes said the ad should have been checked by “our advertising people”.
“Basically there were two ads that were entered into our advertising system, which is largely automated these days, and the second ad entered actually overrode the first and so it went through,” he said.
“So we simply have to admit that’s a mistake try and stop it [from happening] again.”
The error comes after several cutbacks at Fairfax Media which many staff are claiming at the final straw in their ability to produce quality journalism.
The company was taken to task by the ABC’s Media Watch programme last year after a raft of embarrassing gaffes.